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Taiwan (ROC) – Important Facts

Taiwan, a territory of the Republic of China, is an island in East Asia in the Western Pacific Ocean. It is surrounded by the East China Sea, Philippine Sea, and the Taiwan Strait. Proximate countries include mainland China, the islands of Japan, and the Philippines. The geography of Taiwan is rugged mountains in the east. The government system is a multiparty democracy; the chief of state is the president, and the head of government is the premier. Taiwan has a free market<market economy in which the prices of goods and services are determined in a free price system, and there is little government involvement. Taiwan is a member of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC).

Taiwan now faces many of the same economic issues as other developed economies. With the prospect of continued relocation of labor-intensive industries to economies with cheaper work forces, such as in mainland China and Vietnam, Taiwan’s future development will have to rely on further transformation to a high technology and service-oriented economy. In recent years, Taiwan has successfully diversified its trade markets, cutting its share of exports to the United States from 49% in 1984 to 20% in 2002. Taiwan’s dependence on the United States should continue to decrease as its exports to Southeast Asia and mainland China grow and its efforts to develop European markets produce results. Taiwan’s accession to the WTO and its desire to become an Asia-Pacific “regional operations center” are spurring further economic liberalization.

The island runs a trade surplus, largely because of its surplus with China, and its foreign reserves are the world’s fifth largest, behind those of China, Japan, Saudi Arabia, and Switzerland. In 2006 China overtook the US to become Taiwan’s second-largest source of imports after Japan. China is also the island’s number one destination for foreign direct investment. Taiwan since 2009 has gradually loosened rules governing Chinese investment on the island and has also secured greater market access for its investors in the mainland. In August 2012, the Taiwan Central Bank signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on cross-Strait currency settlement with its Chinese counterpart. The MOU allows for the direct settlement of Chinese Renminbi (RMB) and the New Taiwan Dollar across the Strait, which has helped Taiwan develop into a local RMB hub.

Important Details

  • Country ISO3 : NA
  • Country Code : NA
  • Income Group : High Income
  • Lending Category : NA
  • Region : East Asia and Pacific
  • Currency Unit: New Taiwan dollar (NT$)
  • WTO Member : Yes
  • Trade organisations : WTO, APEC, ICC and others(as Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu)
  • world rank : 14
  • Regional Ranking : 5th in the Asia–Pacific Region