Financial services to stay open amid level 3 alert

Financial services to stay open amid level 3 alert

NO IN-PERSON FILING:
Tax offices in the north would only offer other services, and scheduled shareholders’ meetings would implement virus curbs, authorities said

  • By Kao Shih-ching / Staff reporter

Banks, insurers and brokerages in Taipei and New Taipei City are to open as normal tomorrow, the Financial Supervisory Commission said on Saturday.

All financial service providers have been instructed to ensure uninterrupted customer services while following the cities’ tightened disease prevention measures, the commission said.

The announcement came after the Central Epidemic Command Center raised the COVID-19 alert for the two cities to level 3 through Friday next week, calling on the public to avoid unnecessary travel, activities and gatherings, banning indoor gatherings of more than five people and outdoor gatherings of more than 10 people, and implementing sector-specific rules for businesses.

Photo: Allen Wu, Taipei Times

To reduce person-to-person contacts, the Ministry of Finance said that National Taxation Bureau offices in northern Taiwan would stop accepting in-person income tax filings.

The offices in Taipei, New Taipei City, Keelung, Taoyuan and Yilan would not accept tax filings until Friday next week, but remain open for other purposes, it said, adding that disease prevention measures, such as checking visitors’ temperatures, would be in place.

The ministry on Wednesday last week announced that the deadline for filing individual and corporate income tax for last year has been extended by one month, to June 30.

It urged people to file their taxes online, which can also be done using a smartphone.

The Securities and Futures Bureau said that listed companies would still have to hold in-person annual shareholders’ meetings, but control the number of participants, guaranteeing that no more then five people attend a meeting in the same room.

The requirement for in-person shareholders’ meetings is stipulated in the Company Act (公司法) to safeguard the participation rights of minority shareholders, it said.

Despite a provision in the Securities and Exchange Act (證券交易法) that shareholders’ meetings must be held before the end of June, the bureau said it would on a case-by-case basis decide whether companies that do not meet this deadline be exempted from penalties.

Commission data showed that 261 listed companies have scheduled shareholder meetings between tomorrow and Friday next week.

Of those companies, 28 had more than 50 shareholders attending their meetings in person last year, the commission said.

Additional reporting by CNA

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