FDI in Taiwan Slashed; Taiwan’s Domestic Violence Epidemic; Taipei-Shanghai Forum; Fresh Pressure on Tsai

FDI in Taiwan Slashed, Investment from China Mixed 

Applications by foreign companies to invest in Taiwan in the first five months of the year was down 6% on the same time a year ago, according to the latest data from the Ministry of Economic Affairs. The ministry’s Investment Commission says 1,260 foreign direct investment (FDI) projects with a total value of US$3.3 billion were approved from January to May 2017. That reflects a 35% decline in the value of investments from the prior corresponding period.

The value of investment applications from China for the period also declined, down 17% to US$143.6 million. Taiwanese investment in China is on the rise, however, with Taiwan-based tech firms eyeing solid growth across the Taiwan Strait. The commission reported the number of applications approved for China-bound investment in the first five months of the year was 214, up 120% from 2016. Still, the total value of those investments was down 24% to US$2.57 billion.

Domestic Abuse Reported Every 5 Minutes in Taiwan

Women in Taiwan suffer alarmingly high rates of domestic violence. Overworked frontline women’s rescue workers say the traditional patriarchal family system is still a key factor in the prevalence of abuse against women.

In 2016, 117,550 domestic violence cases were reported to officials in Taiwan. That is 322 each day, or one every five minutes.

The statistics – provided by the Ministry of Health and Welfare’s Department of Protective Services – show that the annual number of reported cases of domestic violence in Taiwan has been higher than 100,000 for the past five years.

The definition of domestic violence is not restricted to physical violence – other common forms include emotional abuse, intimidation, coercion, threats and isolation. In Taiwan, more than half of the reported domestic violence cases take place in relationships where people are married, divorced, or unmarried couples living together, and a further 14% of the cases involve children.

Taipei-Shanghai Forum Set for Early July

A forum between the mayors of Taipei and Shanghai will be held in Shanghai on July 2. The annual meeting, which comes amid frosty tension across the Taiwan Strait, will focus on community health, environmental protection, smart city and public service, and young startups, Central News Agency reports.

The forum has taken place since 2010 and the host city alternates between Taipei and Shanghai. It follows a visit paid to China earlier this month by Taiwan’s out-going opposition leader. Kuomintang (KMT) chair Hung Hsiu-chu was in Xiamen for the 9th Straits Forum – the annual meeting between the KMT and the Chinese Communist Party.

Fresh Pressure on Tsai to Pardon Former President

President Tsai Ing-wen has again been urged by a group within her own Democratic Progressive Party to grant an official pardon to former President Chen Shui-bian. Chen, in office from 2000 to 2008, was convicted in September 2009 and sentenced to life in prison for bribery, embezzlement and money laundering. The sentence was later reduced to 20 years. The former president, who is now in poor health, maintains the charges are politically motivated. Since taking office, Tsai has been pressured many times to pardon Chen. This time, Tsai’s spokesman responded that the president’s top concern about Chen now is his health condition, Central News Agency reports.