Taiwanese wealth & Taiwan Economy
                                ★   this site's world No.1 in  2020~21,  2017~19,  2016 2015 2014,  2013 2010~12    ★  Top rankings since 1998   

    The sites:  home  brief  Taiwan  TW  tour  personality  food  medical  CovID-19  diplomacy  restaurants  night markets  buffet  market  women  speech  massage  prostitutes  watching u  fraud  judiciary  police  corruption  foreign labor  illegal migrants  prosecutors  soft power  death penalty  happiness  housing  transportation  avia  image  creativity  human rights   FB   US cartoons  US Design  intl Human rights  judicial persecution  repression&oppression  bully  univ  drugs  news  military(Chn-Taiwan-US war)  democracy  economy&wealth




        Taiwan Economy

economically, Taiwan is dependent on Beijing.   tech. & science rely on the US


●  Finance Yahoo, 2021-11-20:  Taiwan - a GDP of $760 billion (21st biggest) and GDP per capita of $32,000, (29th). a critical supplier of semiconductors, (20% global market share),   in 2020, Taiwan’s exports to China hit an all-time high. And “China and Hong Kong combined now represent 34% of Taiwan’s overall trade, compared with 13% with the United States,” according to Brookings. (The U.S. Trade Representative notes that Taiwan is currently our 9th largest goods trading partner with $90.6 billion in two-way goods trade — during 2020.)  finance.yahoo.com/news/why-you-should-care-about-taiwan-103511885.html


●  Global Times, 2021-9-20: Taiwan has a trade surplus of more than $100 billion a year with the Chinese mainland ... Mainland stops importing two Taiwan fruits, and DPP authority is howling.    globaltimes.cn/page/202109/1234662.shtml


●  Japan Times, 2021-7-5: China could try to strangle Taiwan economically. Business ties between the two countries have grown into a dense web of interdependence: Taiwanese companies have invested $190 billion on the mainland and more than a million Taiwanese live there. Yet these ties are now fraying as talk of economic decoupling occupies businesspeople and politicians in Taiwan japantimes.co.jp/opinion/2021/07/05/commentary/world-commentary/dire-straits-taiwans-fragile-status-quo/


●  Council on Foreign Relations, 2021-5-10:   Taiwan’s economy remains reliant on trade with China, which is the island’s largest trading partner. However, their economic relationship has experienced disruptions in recent years, partly due to Beijing’s pressure on the island and Taiwanese officials’ growing concern about its overreliance on trade with China.(cfr.org/backgrounder/china-taiwan-relations-tension-us-policy


●  Foreign Policy, 2021-4-14: Taiwan and China Are Locked in Economic Co-Dependence /  Cross-strait trade hit a record last year, including indirect trade through Hong Kong and Macao, with Taiwan’s exports representing some 70 percent of the total. Much of the increase was due to strong global demand for made-in-China goods ...The largest proportion of Taiwanese exports is sophisticated electronics, especially cutting-edge semiconductors that China lacks the ability to produce.. (ps: Reuters, 2021-4-14: Taiwan says its chip firms will adhere to new U.S. rules blacklisting China supercomputing entities )  


 East Asia Forum, 2021-7-6:  The 27 per cent increase in semiconductor exports to China in 2020 was the main factor underpinning the overall increase in exports. As a major hub in global supply chains, the future orientation of Taiwan’s trade relationship with China depends more on other external factors, like the direction of US policy towards China and supply chain reform.  eastasiaforum.org/2021/07/06/taiwans-china-dependency-is-a-double-edged-sword/


●  China Times (Taiwan), 2021-8-19: Due to housing price and stock price increasing largely, the gap between the rich and the poor is widened , the top 1/5 household disposable income is 6.15 times that of the bottom 1/5, hit top in recent 8 years.    chinatimes.com/opinion/20210818003931-262104?chdt


●  United Daily (Taiwan), 2021-7-6, editorial: CovID-19 worsens class contradiction - according to gov. statistics, top 5% rich people's annual average income is NTD 5.07 millions (USD 170 thousands), the last 5% is NTD 37 thousands (USD 1.2 thousands)   udn.com/news/story/7338/5580578?from=udn_ch2_menu_v2_main_cate


  Credit Suisse, Research Institute, Global Wealth Databook 2021

  Credit Suisse, Research Institute

Global Wealth Databook 2021, June 2021  -   countries of Asia & pacific

  GDP per adult 2020 Median wealth
per adult 2020
per adult 2000
Wealth per adult 2020 Financial wealth per adult 2020 Non-Financial wealth per adult 2020 Total wealth (USD bn) share of world wealth
Australia 69318 238072 108656 483755 246617 330565 9268 2.22
China 13394 24067 4247 67771 33102 41874 74884 17.9
Hong Kong 54245 173768 167949 503335 365478 195518 3167 0.76
Japan 46812 122980 191446 256596 179081 109795 26931 6.44
Korea 37340 89671 50503 211369 96543 158446 8981 2.15
Macau 96840 - 88546 271679 - - 146 0.03
Singapore 69049 86717 107007 332995 223443 158825 1627 0.39
Taiwan 32371 93044 92298 238862 184061 83761 4690 1.12
US 83265 79274 215146 505421 417248 152945 126340 30.20



●  Global Times, 2-26-2021: Taiwan, therefore, has a deep, unidirectional dependence on the mainland's economy, and "this situation won't easily change in the future,"  The mainland remained Taiwan's largest export market in 2020, accounting for 43.8 percent of the region's total exports that year, the highest level in the past decade. The proportion was followed by the US' 14.7 percent   globaltimes.cn/page/202102/1216679.shtml    Global Times, 3-24-2021: In 2020, the island's exports to the mainland and Hong Kong hit a new high to reach $151.45 billion, a 14.6 percent increase year-on-year. (globaltimes.cn/page/202103/1219356.shtml).


●  Barrons, 2021-4-14:  The saber rattling around Taiwan has escalated in recent weeks... A potential conflict related to Taiwan has long been one of the “all bets are off” types of risks investors mention but dismiss as highly unlikely. But they are getting more attention against a backdrop of increasingly frosty relations between the U.S. and China that is littered with potential risks for investors.         barrons.com/articles/add-another-china-related-risk-for-investors-to-watch-taiwan-51618349977


 Newsweek, 1-20-2021: ... bilateral trade between Taiwan and China stood at $235 billion for the year until November. Exports from China accounted for just $54 billion, with Taiwan recording a significant trade surplus.. the figures showed Taiwan's economy was "inseparable" from China's newsweek.com/chinese-communist-party-apparatchik-demands-progress-taiwan-unification-1562999




pic.: No.2 "Taiwanese wealth" on Bing, 2021-11-21, 2021-7-8, 2021-6-24

pic.: No.3 "Taiwanese wealth" on Yahoo Taiwan, 2021-7-8, 2021-6-24; No.2 at 2021-11-21


●  Economist, 11-19-2020:  Annual investment flows from Taiwan to China mainland have fallen by more than half since 2015. This growing reticence can be explained by 3 considerations.
   (1)  geopolitical :  China's goal of discouraging formal independence by strengthening business ties is increasingly transparent to many Taiwanese.  Tariffs imposed by America on a long list of Chinese exports have prompted many Taiwanese producers to shift operations out of China.
   (2)  competition:  the capabilities of homegrown Chinese rivals, are becoming more competitive and innovative.
   (3)  generational change: the impending “leadership vacuum” has made them cautious


●  Credit Suisse, the Global wealth reports and Global wealth data-book of 2020

statistics - number of  billionaires of each country

ranks Asian country No. of billionaires,    Mar. 2020
No.1 US 358
No.2 China 142
No.5 Hong Kong 39
No.5 India 39
No.12 Japan 15
No.14 Taiwan 13
No.15 Australia 12
No.16 Singapore 12
No.19 Thai. 10
No.20 Korea 9



statistics - percentage of millionaires of the world total

ranks country millionaires % of the world total,
at end of 2019
No.1 US 39%
No.2 China 11%
No.3 Japan 6%
No.4 UK 5%
No.5 France 4%
No.5 Germany 4%
No.7 Canada 3%
No.7 Australia 3%
No.7 Italy 3%
No.10 Spain 2%
No.10 India
No.10 Korea
No.10 Swiss
No.10 Nederland
No.15 Hong Kong 1%
No.15 Taiwan 1%
  rest of the world 11%
1% =  about 1,330,769


while most countries suffered adversely from the pandemic during the first half of 2020, some countries escaped the negative consequences for household wealth.
In terms of wealth per adult. Change in wealth per adult (USD) in January–June 2020, biggest gains are :
 Hong Kong SAR (up USD 5,880), Taiwan (Chinese Taipei, up USD 8,330), the Netherlands (up USD 16,430) and Switzerland (up USD 23,430) were the main beneficiaries during the first half of 2020
In percentage terms,  China did relatively well with gains near 4%, bit lower than Philippines, Nederland.
Change in GDP  ―   
2020 forcast : China 1.7,  Korea -1.8 , TW -2 ,  HK -4.2 ,   Aus -4.4 ,  US -5.3 , Japan -5.4 ,  Singapore -6





●  Credit Suisse, the Global wealth reports of 2019

Credit Suisse



Median wealth per adult (USD) Mean wealth per adult (USD)
1 Swiss 227891 564653
2 AUSTRALIA 181361 286058
3 Iceland 165961 380868
4 Hong Kong 146887 489258
5 Luxembourg 139789 358003
6 Belgium 117093 246135
7 NZ 116433 304124
8 Japan 110408 238104
9 Canada 107004 294255
10 Ireland 104842 272310
11 France 101942 276121
12 UK 97452 280049
13 Singapore 96967 297873
14 Spain 95360 207531
15 Austria 94070 274919
16 Italia 91889 234139
17 Malta 76016 143566
18 South Korea 72198 175015
19 Norway 70627 267348
20 Taiwan 70191 210525


●  the Allianz Wealth report, 9 23 2020

  Gross Financial Assets   liabilities 
country in Eur bn  EUR per capita  in Eur bn EUR per capita
China 23125  16129 7076    4935
Japan  16116  127041    2945   23212
Singapore 864  148830 208  35826
Australia 3658 145150  1560   61910
New Zealand   602  125779  142 29688
USA  83690 254328  14743   44804
Taiwan 3134  131832 502  21126
Korea 3121 60935  1473 28758

  the Allianz Wealth Equity Indicator (AWEI)

●  Bloomberg, 11-21-2020: https://www.bloombergquint.com/china/taiwanese-businesses-boost-investment-into-china-during-pandemic

Total approved investment from Taiwan to China rose to $4.7 billion in the first 10 months of this year, an increase of 47% over the same period in 2019...China is retaining its appeal for many Taiwanese businesses, even as President Tsai Ing-wen’s government offers incentives to bring investment back home.


 NBC 10-24-2020: Economically, Taiwan is dependent on Beijing.  Washington Post, 1-2-2017 noted " 83 percent Taiwanese chose bread (China's economy) over romance ("independence").


 Bloomberg 1-9-2020: Slow income growth and aging society post challenge ahead, Taiwanese income-per-person, income per capita, lowest of Four Tigers .   NY Times 1-11-2020:  lowest unemployment rate in two decades ...  The Guardian, 1-9-2020: The economy is improving, with wage growth and high employment.


Global Times 9-8-2020: Taiwan enjoys a surplus of nearly $100 billion with the mainland every year. (ps:  New York Times 12-3-2019: Trade between China and Taiwan exceeded $181 billion in 2017, up from about $35.5 billion in 1999. )


●  Credit Suisse, the Global wealth reports and Global wealth data-book of 2020



●  The China Times, 6-13-2020 editorial: 41.5% exports from Taiwan to China,  No.2 is 14.5% to the US.


●  The China Times, 12-9-2020 editorial: Looking at the economic growth curve in the past 25 years, it's clear to see if Chinese mainland's economy was good, Taiwan's was good, otherwise not.   The good  economic growth rate of Taiwan in 2020 is because (1) good epidemic control (2)  good export for "diverted orders" effect (3) The global production chain reconstruction was prompting a massive wave of Taiwanese firms to leave China and bring their manufacturing home.   For full text pls. read https://www.chinatimes.com/opinion/20201209005227-262101?chdtv


●  BBC UK  1-2-2019      What's behind the China-Taiwan divide?   https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-34729538

The US is by far Taiwan's most important friend, and its only ally.
Given the huge divide between these two positions, most other countries seem happy to accept the current ambiguity, whereby Taiwan has most of the characteristics of an independent state, even if its legal status remains unclear.

... links between the two peoples (ps: Chinese, Taiwanese) and economies have grown sharply. Taiwanese companies have invested about $60bn (£40bn) in China, and up to one million Taiwanese now live there, many running Taiwanese factories.
Some Taiwanese worry their economy is now dependent on China. Others point out that closer business ties makes Chinese military action less likely, because of the cost to China's own economy...


●  United Daily, editorial, 11-5-2019: Taiwan's economy is really back to top of Four Asian Tigers (HK, Singapore, Korea, TW)? https://udn.com/news/story/11321/4144692

 Taiwanese votes in elections, Nov. 2018
New York Times, 11-23-2018:  Economic growth, employment and pension reforms were among key issues in the elections...China said the results (Taiwan elections) reflected a desire of Taiwanese for better relations with the mainland...

      Quartz , 11-25-2018 :  
      Taiwan’s elections have given Beijing much to celebrate  (https://qz.com/1473960/taiwans-elections-have-given-beijing-much-to-celebrate/)

    Le Monde (France), 11-24-2018 :  A Taïwan, des élections sous influence chinoise

    Wall Street Journal , 11 25 2018:

       A great virtue of Taiwan’s voters is that they’re pragmatic, a useful trait for an island under threat of a Chinese invasion. That pragmatism was on display in local elections Saturday that rebuked President Tsai Ing-wen while refusing to ban nuclear power.

     ●  Reuters UK , 11-26-2018: Beijing told Reuters simply: “They’re really happy.”  
      SET news, Taiwan, 11-26-2018: 英國路透社一針見血,認為中國是這次選舉的最大贏家,而華盛頓郵報和法國世界報也都認為,中國是左右這次選舉的最大關鍵。

     ●  NY Times 11-28-2018: Will Taiwan Be the First Domino to Fall to China?


Washington Post, 1-5-2018 :  China is Taiwan’s largest trading partner and China is Taiwan’s main destination for outbound investment; 40 percent of Taiwan’s exports flow to China and a fifth of Taiwan’s gross domestic product derives from its economic ties to the mainland.

Credit Suisse, Oct. 18,  2018

country Wealth per adult(USD) GDP per adult Total wealth (bn)    Share of world wealth quality
United States 403,974 81,425 98,154 31.0% Good
Singapore 283,118  75,242  1,289 0.4 % Satisfactory
France 280,580 55,668 13,883  4.4% Good
United Kingdom 279,048 54,621 14,209 4.5% Good
Japan  227,235 47,980  23,884  7.5% Good
Germany 214,893 57,955  14,499 4.6% Good
Taiwan  212,375 31,146  4,065  1.3 % Satisfactory
China 47,810  12,147 51,874 16.4% Good
Global Wealth Rpt.,  
Global Weaalth Databook,  


Washington Post, 1-2-2017 :   the Taiwanese are not willing to pursue independence at all costs. Many are concerned with the economy. When asked to choose between formal independence or maintaining economic ties with China, 83 percent chose bread over romance...   https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2017/01/02/yes-taiwan-wants-one-china-but-which-china-does-it-want/?utm_term=.8d999292eabd

New York times, 12-13-2016 : Today, more than two-thirds of Taiwan’s outward foreign direct investment is to China, which is also Taiwan’s leading trading partner.

Taiwanese has emerged a consensus  that some degree of economic interdependence with China is unavoidable but that overdependence is risky.

Beijing’s strategy of giving Taiwanese economic benefits so that Taiwanese will become more inclined toward unification has not been successful ...


BBC, UK,  6-14-2017: Taiwan has become one of Asia's big traders. It is considered to have achieved an economic miracle, becoming one of the world's top producers of computer technology. /  Taiwan country profile  http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-16164639

Wikipedia  Economy of Taiwan

Taiwan is the 22nd-largest economy in the world, and its high-tech industry plays a key role in the global economy. (Taiwan has a developed capitalist economy that ranks as the 22th-largest in the world by purchasing power parity (PPP) ) It is ranked highly in terms of ... economic freedom, and human development...These SMEs usually produce products on an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) or original design manufacturer (ODM) basis, resulting in less resources spent on research and development.   Due to the emphasis of the OEM/ODM model, companies are usually unable to make in-depth assessments for investment, production, and marketing of new products, instead relying upon importation of key components and advanced technology from the United States and Japan.  / https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiwan

Credit Suisse, Nov. 15,  2017

Global Wealth report 2017,  Country summary


Mean wealth per Adult (USD)

Median wealth per Adult (USD)

Taiwan 188,081 87,257
Japan 225,057  123,724
Singapore 268,776 108,850
France 263,399 119,720
UK 278,038 102,641

Compared to the world as a whole, Taiwan has high average
wealth and only moderate wealth inequality.

    Credit Suisse, Dec. 2016
    Taiwan, Asia Tiger  -  Taiwan's average level of wealth, at USD 172,
847, is well above that of most countries in the Asia-Pacific region, and similar to that of Western Europe. ( Taiwan's mean wealth per adult, at USD 172,847, is about same as that of France USD244,400 or Germany USD185,175, Taiwan's median wealth per adult USD 63,134, is about in the same level with France USD 99,923, Canada 96,664.) http://publications.credit-suisse.com/tasks/render/file/index.cfm?fileid=AD783798-ED07-E8C2-4405996B5B02A32E


  United Daily, Opinion, 12-5-2017 :  The average monthly salary of Taipei employee (in the amount of NT 43500) is behind that of Beijing's (rmb 9900, equal NT46000 ), Shanghai is at the third (about NT 43000).  / 智聯招聘survey.


Academia Sinica of Taiwan,  10-5-2017 :  Taiwan Economic Competition and Growth Strategy Policy Proposal  (中央研究院《臺灣經濟競爭與成長策略政策建議書》)
The country will fall into “middle-income” limbo in the next decade if it fails to deal with “three evil hands” that are stalling the economy ...

the law, environmental assessments, and Taiwan-China relations—that could leave Taiwan stuck in the so-called “middle-income trap” and see at least 15 (-30) countries catch up with it in the next 10 years.

 Its economic growth rate has reduced rapidly. In the past ten years, its average economic growth rate has dropped to 3.82%, which is lower than other Asian countries such as South Korea and Singapore.



●  Washington Post, 10-10-2017

Taiwan would step up economic relations with the 10 Southeast Asian countries and another eight Asian-Pacific nations that her government considers prime economic development partners. Taiwan calls that mission its “New Southbound Policy” . 


Forbes 4-23-2017, "Taiwan's Once Mighty High-Tech Sector Is Falling Behind Because Of Low Pay" : Taiwan used to be an indispensable part of the world high-tech supply chain. Now the island that derives a fifth of its economy from the likes of PCs, tablets and smart phones for export is unsure how long all that can sustain. The most often cited reason: Taiwan isn’t keeping up in software, which in today’s terms means mobile apps and artificial intelligence as well as the stuff Microsoft does for PCs....Pay for university professors is too low to attract world-class people from overseas to teach...  https://www.forbes.com/sites/ralphjennings/2017/04/23/taiwans-once-mighty-high-tech-sector-is-falling-behind-because-of-low-pay/#204190537b43/Asia /#BigBusiness

The China Times, opinion, 11-7-2017, The United Daily, opinion, 11-10-2017:  Taiwan's industries are short of 5 core elements : electricity and water supply, labor, land and talented persons.

Le Monde of France, Mai '16, reported the economies of both sides were complementary, now compete each other.   Taiwanese are gradually being excluded from the Chinese chain of production and supply. (Mais les économies des deux rives, qui étaient complémentaires, entrent désormais en concurrence. Les entreprises taïwanaises sont progressivement exclues de la mise en place d’une chaîne de production et d’approvisionnement chinoise ... )

National Policy Foundation , 7-16-2009
  One problem of Taiwan's high tech industry is lacking of key technology ...  http://www.npf.org.tw/2/6142

●  People's Daily of China (international edition), 11-12-2017 : China's GDP in 2016 is about 23 times the number of Taiwan's, five Chinese provinces' (GuanDong, JiangSu, ShanDong, ZheJiang, HeNan ) GDPs topped Taiwan's GDP already, in 3-5 years, 10 provinces might top Taiwan. (brief , UDN, 11-13-2017) ; (more to see The China Times, opinion, 12-18-2017 "當我們看不起的大陸超越我們").