[quote=“Gubo”]I realize banks are tying all new accts to ARCs or some other ‘tong yi bian hao’, and they’re inputting the ARC’s expiration date into their system. What happens once the ARC expires if it isn’t extended? Any implications for the bank accts you still have?
By the way, many people probably need to have their current ATM cards replaced with the new cards with IC chips, so better head over to your bank and ask. At that time, they’ll ask to see your ARC and passport and will probably input a slew of info into their system. Things have gotten a lot more complicated over the last few years in terms of opening accts.[/quote]
I think a good argument could be made for moving your money out of Taiwan. That said, the difficulty of opening a new account is spreading in large part thanks to pressure from the USA. It’s part of the war on terrorism. We’re going to control terrorists by making it hard for them to open an account (without an ARC?). Really, I know someone who wanted to open an account in Hong Kong recently, and had a hell of a time - he needed a local person with an account at that bank (for one year minimum) to vouch that he was really who he claimed to be. The voucher had to be in writing. I checked on this during my last Hongkong visit, and found that it was indeed true.
About the ATM cards - yes, it’s definitely good to get one of the new ones with the memory chip, but not all the banks are up to speed on this yet. Bank of Taiwan and Cathay haven’t even started, but the post office and First Bank are two that I know have it ready to roll.