Taiwan (Taiwan) has a Unicameral parliament with legislated quotas for the single/lower house and at the sub-national level. 47 of 113 (42%) seats in the Legislative Yuan are held by women.
At a glance
Structure of Parliament: Unicameral
Are there legislated quotas...
- For the Single/Lower House? Yes
- For the Sub-National Level? Yes
Are there voluntary quotas...
- Adopted by political parties? No
Is there additional information?...
Last updated: Mar 2, 2021
|Quota Type||Reserved seats|
|Quota type: Reserved seats||Constitution||Article 64 of the Constitution provides that among the members of the Legislative Yuan to be elected in line with the relevant provisions, the number of women shall be prescribed by law. Furthermore, Article 134 stipulates that ‘in the various kinds of elections, the number of women to be elected shall be fixed, and measures pertaining thereto shall be prescribed by law’.|
|Electoral law||Of the total 113 seats in the lower house, 73 seats are elected under the first-past-the-post system in single-member constituencies, and 6 seats are elected by Aboriginal voters through single non-transferable vote in two 3-member constituencies. The remaining 34 seats are legislator-at-large seats (including overseas compatriots), elected through nationwide votes, and calculated using the largest remainder method. For these 34 seats, the law stipulates that ‘the quota of women electees of each political party list shall not be less than 50%’ (Civil Servants Election And Recall Act, Article 67 (6)).|
|Legal sanctions for non-compliance||Electoral law||‘Within the quota of women electees distributed to a political party, if the women electees determined by distributing the quota in accordance with the sequence in the list of candidates are less than the due quota of women electees, the women candidates ranking behind in sequence shall have the priority to be elected’ (Civil Servants Election And Recall Act, Article 67 (6)).|
|Rank order/placement rules||Electoral law||None|
|Is the provision of direct public funding to political parties related to gender equality among candidates?||Yes||
Article 43: Except for the national integrated election and the overseas election of central civil servants, if there is only one electee and the vote gained by the electee reaches not less than 1/3 of the vote for being elected in the electoral district, or if there are two or more electees and one of them gains a vote of not less than 1/2 of the vote for being elected, the campaign expenses paid by the electee shall be subsidized by a rate of NT$30 per vote. However, the maximum subsidy may not exceed the maximum campaign fund of the candidates in this electoral district. For the vote for being elected referred to in the preceding Paragraph, if there are two or more electees, the lowest vote shall apply; if the electee of the lowest vote is elected in the quota reserved for women, the lowest vote for being elected shall refer to the vote of the electee of the second lowest vote. ; Article 67: The quota of women electees of each political party referred to in the preceding Paragraph shall not be less than 1/2. The quota of women electees distributed to each political party shall be distributed in accordance with the sequence of the list of candidates registered by each political party. Within the quota of women electees distributed to a political party, if the women electees determined by distributing the quota in accordance with the sequence in the list of candidates are less than the due quota of women electees, the women candidates ranking behind in sequence shall have the priority to be elected. If the number of women candidates registered by a political party in the list of candidates is less than the quota reserved for women, it shall be regarded as vacancy." See also Articles 67 and 68.
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|Are there provisions for other financial advantages to encourage gender equality in political parties?||No||
See more in International IDEA's Political Finance database
Quota at the Sub-National Level
- Quota type: Reserved Seats
|Quota type: Reserved Seats||Constitution||‘In the various kinds of elections, the number of women to be elected shall be fixed, and measures pertaining thereto shall be prescribed by law’ (Constitution, Article 134).|
|Electoral law||At the local level, 1 seat out of every 4 is reserved for women, if there are more than 4 seats. Further, 1 seat out of every 4 seats reserved for the indigenous population is reserved for a woman from the indigenous population, if there are more than 4 seats (Local Governments Act, Article 33).|
|Legal sanctions for non-compliance||Electoral law||In local elections, if the result of ballot counting shows that the women electees are less than the specified quota, the votes of the women candidates not to be elected in the electoral district shall be calculated separately, and the women candidates who get the comparative majority of votes shall be elected in sequence (Civil Servants Election And Recall Act, Article 68).|
|Rank order/placement rules||Electoral law||One in every four seats is reserved for women.|
Until 1992 the National Assembly, a large elected body with delegates from the mainland and the Taiwan constituencies, was the main legislative organ responsible for amending the constitution and electing the president. However, the National Assembly became largely defunct because of its inability to renew its composition due to the term extension of mainland delegates. In 1992, the president became directly elected by the people, and in 2000 the National Assembly was stripped of most powers, transferring legislative powers to the Legislative Yuan. In 2005, the National Assembly was abolished completely and amendments to the constitution are now ultimately decided by popular ballot. During its existence, the National Assembly had several reserved seats for delegates from women's organizations. Under the single non-transferable vote system, until the elections in 2005, there were multimember constituencies; in those with more than four members, one was reserved for women candidates who obtained the highest number of votes. The aggregate number of seats this system reserved for women equalled 10 per cent (Matland 2006: 288–89).
In light of a constitutional amendment in the early 1990s, it was proposed that 25 per cent of all legislative seats be reserved for women. This bill did not pass through parliament.
- Constitution of the Republic of China (amended 2005), accessed 04 April 2014;
- National Election Law, accessed 04 April 2014;
- Local Election Law, accessed 04 April 2014;
- Central Electoral Commission, ‘Legislative Yuan Elections’, accessed 04 April 2014;
- Central Election Commission Website, 2016 Legislator Election [accessed: 2021-03-02]
- Matland, R. E., ‘Electoral Quotas: Frequency and Effectiveness’, in D. Dahlerup (ed.), Women, Quotas and Politics (New York: Routledge, 2006)
- Huang, Chang-Ling. 2002. ‘Democracy and the Politics of Difference: Gender Quota in Taiwan.’ Paper presented at The Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association. Boston, MA, August 29-September 1.
- Clark, Janet and Cal Clark. 2000. ‘The Reserved Seats System in Taiwan.’ in Rose J. Lee and Cal Clark (eds.). Democracy & the Status of Women in East Asia. Boulder: Lynne Rienner. pp. 61-76.
- Lee, Rose J. 2000. ‘Electoral Reform and Women's Empowerment: Taiwan and South Korea.’ Rose J. Lee and Cal Clark (eds.). Democracy & the Status of Women in East Asia. Boulder: Lynne Rienner. Pp 47-59.
- Chou, Bih-er and Janet Clark. 1994. ‘Electoral Systems and Women's Representation in Taiwan: The Impact of the Reserved Seat System.’ Wilma Rule and Joseph F. Zimmerman (eds.) Electoral Systems in Comparative Perspective: The Impact on Women and Minorities. Westport: Greenwood Press. pp. 161-170.
- Chou, Bih-er, Cal Clark, and Janet Clark. 1990. Women in Taiwan Politics: Overcoming Barriers to Women's Participation in a Modernizing Society. Boulder: Lynne Rienner.
- Taiwan Government Information Office, http://www.gio.gov.tw/