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MOTC Has Approved Taipei City Government as the Competent Authority for the Entire Circular Line, Leaving No Doubt of Its Administrative Responsibility in Accordance with the Law

In response to a report that New Taipei City Government insisted on taking back operational rights for the Circular line, Taipei City DORTS stated that one MRT line will have one local competent authority with one administrational organization responsible for its operations in order to ensure one-stop services, and that is consistent with the spirit of the Mass Rapid Transit Act. The current domestic railway systems have one administrative organization, regardless of whether it is TRA or THSR, and there are no examples of single MRT routes in overseas MRT systems which are jointly operated by two or more administrative agencies.
Taipei City DORTS explained that following the completion of construction of Circular line Phase I by DORTS, it was handed over to Taipei Rapid Transit Corporation (TRTC) for operations. This year it was smoothly opened and became operational, and the Circular line traverses Taipei City and New Taipei City; furthermore, following the completion of construction of south section, north section, and east section, it will form a complete Metropolitan MRT network. The Circular line cannot be divided, and administered separately.
Regarding the public transportation system, the public is concerned about the safety of the system, its convenience, and the stability of its services. One main control center is established for one MRT line, and  just like a person's brain. If two different administrative organizations simultaneously command a brain at the same time, there is the danger of  becoming confused and lost, and this will impact its safety and accuracy. Taipei MRT has accumulated dozens of years of service experience, and according to the results of the most recent survey, last year the overall passengers' rate of satisfaction with Taipei MRT had reached 97.6%. Furthermore, as of September of this year (2020), the average system availability was up to 99.99% with a punctuality rate of 99.6%. With an operational performance which ranks among the best in the world, Taipei City Government is also confident in its ability to continue to serve the citizens of Taipei City and New Taipei City at this level of quality. Changing hands in the middle of one link of the operations will not confer blessings upon the citizens.
In addition, the Circular line and Wanda line employ fully automatic driverless systems with complex system operations. TRTC has involved in the E&M detailed design of Circular line Phase I, and has incorporated operational concepts into the design; furthermore, over a period of at least three years they have gradually trained core cadres and gained an understanding of the overall system characteristics, and they have fully controlled the operational safety of the system. The collaboration between DORTS and TRTC teams has passed the stability tests required by MOTC as well as the preliminary survey and follow-up survey to successfully obtain operating permits, and its operational performance has been outstanding. In the future following the completion of the south section and north section, because Taipei City Government is the local competent authority, it will definitely be handed over to TRTC to handle its operations. At that time, if it once again faces a change of operations midway, it will increase controversy and impact passenger services.
Taipei City DORTS emphasized that Circular line Phase I together with north section & south section and east section will form a complete circular route, and Taipei City Government will be the competent authority of the entire circular route. The whole circular route is based on the following three overall considerations: "one car to reach destinations," "convenience," and "safety," and TRTC is most suitable to handle the operations of the Circular line rather than having conflicts over the right to handle its operations in the short-term. The operational safety of the MRT is a matter which concerns passengers' rights to take public transportation. The central government's promulgation of the Mass Rapid Transit Act was the beginning, and consideration was given to the planning, design, construction and operations, as well as to the supervision and safety which could arise if the route were to traverse different administrative districts. In the event that differences of opinions and disputes between different local governments were encountered, it would be difficult and costly to deal with them. Consequently, as Article 4 of the Mass Transit Act stipulated: "… negotiate with each other to generate the competent authority while the network spans two or more administrative regions...," for the sake of effective management. Regarding related appeals and legal interpretation of New Taipei City’s unilateral claims, Taipei City Government on September 17, 2020 submitted a letter to MOTC who was requested to explain for this. Taipei City DORTS emphasized that all development and content revisions should be utilized for the sound development of the MRT system with improving public welfare as the top priority.