Taiwan | Facts & Information

Updated September 9, 2022 | Infoplease Staff
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Facts & Figures

  • President-elect: Tsai Ing-wen (2016)

    Premier: Simon Chang (2016)

    Land area: 12,456 sq mi (32,261 sq km); total area: 13,892 sq mi (35,980 sq km)

    Population (2014 est.): 23,359,928 (growth rate: 0.25%); birth rate: 8.55/1000; infant mortality rate: 4.49/1000; life expectancy: 79.84

    Capital (2014 est.): Taipei, 6,950,646 (metro. area), 2,693,672 (city proper)

    Other large cities: New Taipei, 3,913,595; Kaohsiung, 2,773,855; Taichung, 2,662,770; Tainan, 1,876,706; Hsinchu, 419,384

    Monetary unit: New Taiwan dollar

    Republic of China

    National name: Zhonghua Minguo

    Current government officials

    Languages: Chinese (Mandarin, official), Taiwanese (Min), Hakka dialects

    Ethnicity/race: Taiwanese (including Hakka) 84%, mainland Chinese 14%, aborigine 2%

    Religions: mixture of Buddhist, Confucian, and Taoist 93%, Christian 4.5%, other 2.5%

    Literacy rate: 96.1% (2003)

    Economic summary: GDP/PPP (2013 est.): $926.4 billion; per capita $39,600. Real growth rate: 2.2%. Inflation: 1.1%. Unemployment: 4.1%. Arable land: 24%. Agriculture: rice, vegetables, fruit, tea, flowers, pigs, poultry, fish. Labor force (2013 est.): 11.55 million; agriculture 5%, industry 36.2%, services 58.8% (2012 est). Industries: electronics, communications and information technology products, petroleum refining, chemicals, textiles, iron and steel, machinery, cement, food processing, vehicles, consumer products, pharmaceuticals. Natural resources: small deposits of coal, natural gas, limestone, marble, asbestos. Exports: $305.8 billion (2013 est.): electronics, flat panels, machinery; metals; textiles, plastics, chemicals; optical, photographic, measuring, and medical instruments. Imports: $268.5 billion (2013 est.): electronics, machinery, crude petroleum, precision instruments, organic chemicals, metals

    Major trading partners: China, U.S., Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore (2012).

    Communications: Telephones: main lines in use: 15.998 million (2012); mobile cellular: 29.455 million (2011). Broadcast media: free-to-air nationwide television networks operating roughly 75 TV stations; about 85% of households utilize multi-channel cable TV; national and regional radio networks with about 170 radio stations broadcasting (2008) Internet hosts: 6.272 million (2012). Internet users: 16.147 million (2009).

    Transportation: Railways: total: 1,580 km (2010). Highways: total: 41,475 km; paved: 41,033 km (including 720 km of expressways); unpaved: 442 km (2009). Ports and harbors: Chilung (Keelung), Hualien, Kaohsiung, Taichung. Airports: 37 (2013).

    International disputes: involved in complex dispute with Brunei, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Vietnam over the Spratly Islands, and with China and the Philippines over Scarborough Reef; the 2002 "Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea" has eased tensions but falls short of a legally binding "code of conduct" desired by several of the disputants; Paracel Islands are occupied by China, but claimed by Taiwan and Vietnam; in 2003, China and Taiwan became more vocal in rejecting both Japan's claims to the uninhabited islands of the Senkaku-shoto (Diaoyu Tai) and Japan's unilaterally declared exclusive economic zone in the East China Sea where all parties engage in hydrocarbon prospecting.

    Major sources and definitions