unbekannter Gast

Taiwan: Economy#

Taiwan has a dynamic capitalist economy with gradually decreasing government guidance of investment and foreign trade. Exports, led by electronics, machinery, and petrochemicals have provided the primary impetus for economic development. This heavy dependence on exports exposes the economy to fluctuations in world demand. Taiwan's diplomatic isolation, low birth rate, and rapidly aging population are other major long-term challenges. Free trade agreements have proliferated in East Asia over the past several years, and following the landmark Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) signed with China in June 2010, Taiwan in July 2013 signed a free trade deal with New Zealand—Taipei’s first-ever with a country with which it does not maintain diplomatic relations—and in November inked a trade pact with Singapore. Negotiations continue on follow-on components of ECFA regarding trade in goods and a dispute resolution mechanism; a trade in services agreement is under review in the legislature. Taiwan's Total Fertility rate of just over one child per woman is among the lowest in the world, raising the prospect of future labor shortages, falling domestic demand, and declining tax revenues. Taiwan's population is aging quickly, with the number of people over 65 accounting for 11.2% of the island's total population as of 2012. The island runs a large overall trade surplus largely because of its surplus with China, and its foreign reserves are the world's sixth largest, behind China, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Russia, 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, Taiwan Central Bank signed a memorandum of understanding on cross-Strait currency settlement with its Chinese counterpart. The MOU allows for the direct settlement of Chinese RMB and the New Taiwan dollar across the Strait, which could help develop Taiwan into a local RMB hub. Closer economic links with the mainland bring greater opportunities for the Taiwan economy, but also poses new challenges as the island becomes more economically dependent on China while political differences remain unresolved.

Economic Facts#

GDP (purchasing power parity)$926.4 billion (2013 est.)
$906.6 billion (2012 est.)
$894.7 billion (2011 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars
GDP - real growth rate2.2% (2013 est.)
1.3% (2012 est.)
4.1% (2011 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$39,600 (2013 est.)
$38,900 (2012 est.)
$38,500 (2011 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars
GDP - composition, by sector of originagriculture: 2%
industry: 29.4%
services: 68.6% (2013 est.)
Population below poverty line1.5% (2012 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 6.4%
highest 10%: 40.3% (2010)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 5%
industry: 36.2%
services: 58.8% (2012 est.)
Exports - commoditieselectronics, flat panels, machinery; metals; textiles, plastics, chemicals; optical, photographic, measuring, and medical instruments
Exports - partnersChina 27.1%, Hong Kong 13.2%, US 10.3%, Japan 6.4%, Singapore 4.4% (2012 est.)
Agriculture - productsrice, vegetables, fruit, tea, flowers; pigs, poultry; fish
Budgetrevenues: $78.24 billion
expenditures: $90.38 billion (2013 est.)
Imports - commoditieselectronics, machinery, crude petroleum, precision instruments, organic chemicals, metals
Imports - partnersJapan 17.6%, China 16.1%, US 9.5% (2012 est.)
Exchange ratesNew Taiwan dollars (TWD) per US dollar -
29.77 (2013 est.)
29.616 (2012 est.)
31.648 (2010 est.)
33.061 (2009)
31.53 (2008)
Exports$305.8 billion (2013 est.)
$299.8 billion (2012 est.)
Debt - external$146.8 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$130.8 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Fiscal yearcalendar year
Imports$268.5 billion (2013 est.)
$268.8 billion (2012 est.)
Industrial production growth rate1.8% (2013 est.)
Industrieselectronics, communications and information technology products, petroleum refining, chemicals, textiles, iron and steel, machinery, cement, food processing, vehicles, consumer products, pharmaceuticals
Inflation rate (consumer prices)1.1% (2013 est.)
1.9% (2012 est.)
Labor force11.55 million (2013 est.)
Unemployment rate4.1% (2013 est.)
4.2% (2012 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index34.2 (2011)
32.6 (2000)
Public debt38.9% of GDP (2013 est.)
35.8% of GDP (2012 est.)
note: data for central government
Current account balance$56.66 billion (2013 est.)
$49.92 billion (2012 est.)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$414.5 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$408.5 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$484.7 billion (2013 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$62.94 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$59.36 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad$240.3 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$226.1 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$831.9 billion (31 December 2012)
$784.1 billion (31 December 2011)
$738.3 billion (31 December 2010)
Central bank discount rate1.88% (31 December 2012)
1.88% (31 December 2011)
Commercial bank prime lending rate2.9% (31 December 2013 est.)
2.88% (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$753.5 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$743.1 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of narrow money$450.1 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
$426.2 billion (31 December 2012 est.)
Stock of broad money$1.189 trillion (31 December 2013 est.)
$1.152 trillion (31 December 2012 est.)
Taxes and other revenues16.1% of GDP (2013 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-2.5% of GDP (2013 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 59.5%
government consumption: 12.2%
investment in fixed capital: 19.4%
investment in inventories: 0.3%
exports of goods and services: 73.1%
imports of goods and services: -64.5%
(2013 est.)
Gross national saving31.3% of GDP (2013 est.)
30.3% of GDP (2012 est.)
29.6% of GDP (2011 est.)