Taiwan’s Elections

Taiwan’s Elections

GS Paper - 2 IR

Why in the news?

In the latest updates, Lai Ching-te, who is from Taiwan's ruling Democratic Progressive Party, won the elections. This happened even though China insists that it has control over the island.

Significance of Taiwan Election Results:

  • Rejection of China's Claims:
      • The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) winning three consecutive elections reflects the Taiwanese people's choice for independence.
      • The results indicate a clear refusal of Chinese sovereignty and the idea of unification, including the 1992 consensus recognizing one China but with different names (PRC and Republic of China).
  • Setback to Chinese Intimidation:
    • The election outcomes can be seen as a response to China's intimidating tactics, including military actions in Taiwan's air defense zone and cyber attacks.
    • It signifies that the Taiwanese public is standing firm against attempts to influence or control their political decisions.

Responses to Taiwan Election by Major Countries:


  • China:
      • China's Foreign Ministry restates its claim of Taiwan being a part of China, emphasizing that election results cannot alter this stance.
  • USA:
      • The U.S. views the election as a showcase of Taiwan's robust democracy.
      • While supporting peace and security in the Taiwan Strait, the U.S. maintains its stance against endorsing Taiwan's independence.
  • Japan:
      • Japan congratulates Taiwan, highlighting shared values and the significance of democratic principles.
  • India:
    • India refrains from officially congratulating Taiwan.
    • Speculation arises that India might be reconsidering its stance on the One China policy, possibly in response to recent Chinese aggression along its borders.

Taiwan's Significance in Global Geopolitics:


  • Economic Influence:
      • Ranked as the 16th largest economy globally, Taiwan is a major trading power.
      • The Taiwan Strait and South China Sea, critical for global maritime trade (60%), impact international trade and investments, including India's.
  • Strategic Location:
      • Strategically positioned in the western Pacific near China, Japan, and the Philippines.
      • Acts as a natural gateway to Southeast Asia and the South China Sea, making it pivotal for global trade and security.
  • Semiconductor Dominance:
      • Taiwan dominates the semiconductor market, producing 92% of advanced logic chips and 55% of global semiconductors.
      • These chips are integral to vehicles, laptops, tablets, and smartphones, underscoring their global importance.
  • Military Strength:
      • Possesses a modern and capable military focused on defending sovereignty and territorial integrity.
  • Global Geopolitical Influence:
    • Events related to Taiwan can impact power dynamics in the Asia-Pacific region and globally.
    • Any conflict in the Taiwan Strait can disrupt critical digital supply chains and trade routes through the South China Sea.

Evolution of India's Stance on Taiwan:

  • Non-official Relations:
      • India maintains unofficial relations with Taiwan, emphasizing mutual respect and shared values of openness and democracy.
  • Peace and Stability Advocacy:
      • As the largest democracy in the Asia-Pacific, India aims to uphold peace and stability.
      • Advocates restraint, discourages unilateral attempts to alter the status quo, and supports de-escalation of tensions.
  • Look East and Act East Policies:
      • India strengthens trade and investment ties with Taiwan, aligning with its Look East and Act East policies.
  • Position on China:
      • In 2022, India openly criticized China's militarization of the Taiwan Strait, marking a shift.
      • India no longer explicitly reaffirms the one-China principle, aligning its policy with QUAD partners.
  • Bilateral Military Engagement:
    • Indian and Taiwanese armed forces enhance contacts, particularly in semiconductor manufacturing initiatives.

Overall, India's approach signals a nuanced evolution, balancing regional stability, economic interests, and alignment with like-minded partners.


The recent elections in Taiwan showed that the people there don't want to be influenced by China and strongly believe in democracy. India's views on Taiwan have changed to fit its strategic interests and the shifting situation in the region

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