Do you know if you are holding and ARC/APRC and a Taiwan drivers license that you have no ability to drive legally in Japan - due to a decision made by the Taiwan government? This is my view is a clear discrimination against permanent residents in Taiwan.
I am an engineer working in the tech park in Taiwan. I have working here for 8 years, and have an APRC, I also have a Taiwanese drivers licenses, both car and bike. But for this topic I will be focusing on the car license. I frequently travel to Japan for various reasons and need to drive in Japan. Previous I had done that using my home license + international license. But due to living in Taiwan so long now, I only have a Taiwanese drivers license.
The standard International license does not work in Japan for Taiwanese licenses. Japan and Taiwan have a different arrangement. That is a Taiwanese license can be used in Japan if it is accompanied by a Japanese translation. This translation is issue by the Taiwan traffic department.
The traffic department has refused to issue me a Translation of the Taiwan drivers license, saying its only for pure Taiwanese people. They are steadfast that APRC is not possible. They gave me a list of excuses which were all bullshit. One being that its not their choice to not issue the translation to APRC holders, it is Japan. I approached to the Japanese consulate in Taipei, they ensured me that this rule does not come from Japan, and they are aware Taiwan has made the policy not to issue the Japanese translation to APRC holders, and they don’t know why. The Japanese consulate said they could advise me how to get the translation in Japan. But in Taiwan there is no option.
So all of us ARC/APRC holders in Taiwan with Taiwanese drivers licenses cannot drive in Japan because we cannot get a translation of our Taiwanese license.
I find the arbitrary choice issue a translation to a Taiwanese, and not a ARC holder - when both are holding the exact same physical license - as a clear case of discrimination against foreigners in Taiwan.
I have approached to the traffic department to address the issue, but they refuse.
What is the next step. I am sure there are more people than just me who live in Taiwan with an ARC and frequently need to travel/holiday and do business in Japan - but we are being restricted by Taiwan’s own discriminatory practice of only issuing the translation only to pure Taiwanese.
Right now, its not seriously urgent due to covid travel retractions. But next year, I am not sure how I will be able to drive and do business when visiting customers in Japan, etc.
How do we fix this?