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Taiwan

https://www.idea.int/democracytracker/

January 2024

Lai Ching-te elected as Taiwan’s president
Election flag

Lai Chin-te of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) won Taiwan’s presidential election on 13 January, securing 40.05 per cent of the vote in the three-way presidential race. Hsiao Bi-khim was elected as vice president. Voter turnout stood at 71.86 per cent, slightly lower than the 74.90 per cent recorded in the 2020 presidential election.

The DPP also experienced a setback in the Legislative Yuan (unicameral legislature), losing its majority in the legislative election held on the same day. The DPP secured 51 seats out of 113, while Kuomintang (KMT) claimed 52 seats; the upstart Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) secured 8 seats; and the last 2 seats were won by independents. Voter turnout was 71.78 per cent, down from 74.86 per cent in the 2020 legislative election. Women constitute 41.59 per cent of the seats, with 47 female lawmakers elected out of 113, comparable to 48 in the previous election. Election observers noted that the electoral process was conducted in a peaceful and orderly manner.

Sources: Central Election Commission, Taipei Times, Liberal International, IFES, International IDEA

August 2023

Legislature amends anti-sexual harassment laws

Taiwan's legislature swiftly responded to the country’s latest #MeToo movement and recent high-profile cases triggered by the hit show, Wave Makers, amending three key laws on sexual harassment. On 31 July, amendments to the Gender Equity Education Act, Act of Gender Equality in Employment, and Sexual Harassment Prevention Act were passed. These changes introduce harsher penalties, including up to three-year jail terms and substantial fines, along with longer statute of limitations and broader definitions of sexual harassment. The ruling party also took prompt action to remove officials implicated in sexual misconduct cases. However, critics argue that these amendments, while a "legislative milestone", fall short in addressing harassment beyond the workplace. Activists call for increased fines to prevent retaliation and more targeted educational initiatives to challenge societal attitudes toward sexual harassment.

Sources: Taipei Times, BBC News, The Associated Press

May 2023

Same-sex couples afforded full adoption rights

Taiwan's legislature on 16 May approved a change to a law that allows same-sex couples to jointly adopt a child to whom neither of them is biologically related. LGBTQIA+ rights advocates have hailed the move as a significant step towards achieving full marriage equality. Previously, the adoption rules only permitted a same-sex partner to adopt a child if there was a biological connection to their spouse. If neither partner had a biological link to the child, only one partner could legally become the child's parent - a restriction which did not apply to heterosexual couples or single people.

Sources: Taipei Times, CNN, NPR

Environmental and health amendments for Indigenous rights

Taiwan's legislature on 26 May passed the Indigenous Peoples Health Act, aimed at improving Indigenous communities' access to resources and medical care in Taiwan. The act requires regular investigation and study of indigenous communities' health needs, the establishment of a health database, and the training of healthcare personnel. It also emphasizes indigenous representation in healthcare policy and encourages the inclusion of indigenous health content in medical education programs.

In a separate development, long-awaited amendments to the Mining Act in Taiwan were also passed on 26 May, granting more power to indigenous communities over mining rights on their lands. Mining companies are now required to seek the consent of local indigenous people before initiating projects, amongst other things. Large mining projects will also have to undergo rigorous environmental impact reviews.

Sources: Taipei Times (1), Taipei Times (2), Focus Taiwan

January 2023

Taiwan recognizes transnational same-sex marriage

Taiwan's Ministry of the Interior lifted restrictions on registering same-sex marriage between Taiwanese and foreign nationals on 9 January, with the exception of mainland Chinese citizens. While Taiwan was the first Asian country to legalize same-sex marriage, it had not previously allowed registration if one partner was a citizen of a jurisdiction where same-sex marriage was illegal.

Sources: Taipei Times, Taiwan News

See all event reports for this country

GSoD Indices Data 2013-2022

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Basic Information

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Population Tooltip
23 894 394
System of government
Semi-Presidential system
Head of government
Premier Chen Chien-jen (since 2023)
Head of government party
Democratic Progressive Party
Electoral system for lower or single chamber
Parallel
Women in lower or single chamber
42.0%
Women in upper chamber
Not applicable
Last legislative election
2024
Effective number of political parties Tooltip
3.32
Head of state
President Tsai Ing-wen (until 20 May 2024)
Selection process for head of state
Direct election (plurality)
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Performance by category over the last 6 months

Representation neutral Representation
Nov 2023
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Representation neutral Rights
Nov 2023
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Apr 2024
Representation neutral Rule of law
Nov 2023
Dec
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Apr 2024
Representation neutral Participation
Nov 2023
Dec
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Apr 2024

Global State of Democracy Indices

Hover over the trend lines to see the exact data points across the years

Explore the indices
Representation
Representation
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/1
high 0.7-1.0
mid 0.4-0.7
low 0.0-0.4
Rights
Rights
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/1
high 0.7-1.0
mid 0.4-0.7
low 0.0-0.4
Rule of Law
Rule of Law
0
/1
high 0.7-1.0
mid 0.4-0.7
low 0.0-0.4
Participation
Participation
0
/1
high 0.7-1.0
mid 0.4-0.7
low 0.0-0.4

Factors of Democratic Performance Over Time

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