In January, Taiwan signed an agreement with the United States for the purchase of, among other things, air defense robots and helicopters for $ 6.5 billion. The arms purchase agreement had been delayed for several years due to political opposition in both countries. According to softwareleverage, China criticized the settlement. Despite this, the two arch-rivals continued to grow closer to Taiwan and China. In May, official tourist offices were opened in each capital.
|Gross domestic product (GDP)||$ 1,189,000,000,000|
|GDP growth rate||2.90%|
|GDP per capita||$ 50,500|
|GDP by sector|
|Proportion of the population below the national poverty line||1.5%|
|Distribution of household income|
|Industrial production growth rate||0.50%|
|Investment volume||18.7% of GDP|
|National debt||35.70% of GDP|
|Foreign exchange reserves||468,100,000,000 USD|
After lengthy negotiations, a trade agreement with China was also signed in June. The agreement, which was described as historical, meant, among other things, reduced duties on a total of around 800 goods and services. The majority, over 500, applied to exports from Taiwan to the mainland, worth nearly US $ 14 billion over three years. According to President Ma Ying-jeou, this should provide a much-needed boost to growth and increase the chances of entering into free trade agreements with other countries. The opposition feared that the agreement threatens to make Taiwan financially dependent on China and accused President Ma of pursuing policies aimed at reunification. The agreement was approved by Parliament and entered into force in September.
According to COUNTRYAAH, Taiwan has the population of 23.78 million. The voters also seemed to approve of the closer relations. That conclusion drew political observers who saw the mayor’s election in November as a value gauge on Mas’s policy. The ruling party of Guomindang won in three of the country’s five largest cities, including Taibei.
Former President Chen Shuibian was repeatedly denied his request during the year pending release of the pending judgment against him. Chen and his wife Wu Shu-jen had both been sentenced to life in prison for corruption. In June, the sentence was reduced to 20 years in prison, and the fines they were sentenced to pay were also reduced. Chen denied the allegations, claiming they were politically motivated. He again appealed the verdict.
Justice Minister Wang Ching-feng resigned in March in protest of plans to carry out the death penalty for the first time in just over four years. In May, four violent criminals were executed. Another 40 or so sentenced to death were sent to Taiwanese prison.
- Abbreviation Finder: Check to see how the two letter abbreviation of TW stands for the country of Taiwan in geography.
Population, society and rights
The Taiwanese population is just over 23 million people: considering the small size of the island, the population density rates are among the highest in the world. With 646 people per square kilometer, Taiwan is second only to Bangladesh, excluding city-states and small island states.
Excluding the approximately two million residents who arrived during the years of the Chinese civil war, the majority of the population is of Han ethnicity: it is descended from Chinese immigrants who reached Taiwan starting from the seventeenth century. 85% of these are from Fujian province, while the remaining 15% are of Hakka ethnicity and come from Guangdong province. The indigenous population, just under 500,000 people, accounts for about 2% of the total. The population growth rate has now fallen to zero, steadily and steadily decreasing since the 1960s, when it was around 3.5%. For some years, moreover, Taiwan has witnessed the emigration of tens of thousands of residents, who decide to move to mainland China, attracted by the greater job opportunities:
Many of those who contest the process of rapprochement with China undertaken in recent years are in favor of the union created between Chinese ethnic groups and the indigenous people of the island. The Taiwanese identity that would thus have come to form would constitute a cultural complex different from the Chinese one. The use of traditional Chinese in writing, in contrast to that of the PRC, simplified to promote literacy in the 1950s and 1960s, is just one example of many other linguistic, social, and political-ideological differences.
Taiwan has experienced a progressive process of democratization and liberalization since the 1990s: despite the protest movement that has grown in recent years, today the country stands as a free democracy both for what concerns the political and civil rights of its citizens, as well as for freedom. of the press and the media system in general. The schooling and literacy rates are close to 100% and the percentage of students who reach university has been growing steadily since the 1980s. The Taiwanese government, on the other hand, accords a decisive importance to education, as evidenced by the high percentages of the government budget allocated over the years to this chapter of expenditure, equal to, if not greater than, 15% of public spending.