Ng Soon Kiat

Taipei Correspondent, Lianhe Zaobao

Soon Kiat is Lianhe Zaobao's Taipei Correspondent, covering cross-Taiwan strait relations, domestic politics and major social developments in the self-ruled island. Before relocating to Taiwan in 2016, Soon Kiat was a reporter with Zaobao's Singapore news desk, with an emphasis on defence and transport issues. Since joining the Chinese language broadsheet in 2012, Soon Kiat had also taken on multiple overseas reporting assignments in such cities as Antalya, Changchun, Kuala Lumpur, Moscow, New Delhi and Washington, D.C.

Soldiers from the military’s chemical units take part in a drill organised by the New Taipei City government to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus, in Xindian district on March 14, 2020. Over 450 medical staff, community volunteers, government employees and military personnel took part in the drill. Taiwan has won praise for its handling of the epidemic. (Sam Yeh/AFP)

Taiwan's ‘epidemic diplomacy' may invite reprisals from Beijing

Turning a corner in recent days in the fight against Covid-19, China may now take stock of those who have been nasty or nice during the crisis. Taiwan may have won international praise and recognition for its efforts against the Covid-19 epidemic, but incurred Beijing’s ire in the process. Zaobao correspondent Ng Soon Kiat finds out more about how mainland China might respond, and how things might turn difficult for Tsai Ing-wen’s second term in government.
Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen speaks during a press conference at the presidential office in Taipei on 22 January 2020. (Sam Yeh/AFP)

What has Tsai Ing-wen's team done right in Taiwan's fight against Covid-19?

Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen has been winning praise for her team’s handling of the Covid-19 outbreak. Premier Su Tseng-chang who calls himself “capable”, is said to be leading a group of capable government officials; Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung, has become the darling of the media and of the people of Taiwan. What have they done to garner such support?
Examples of "I am from Taiwan" stickers sold on PChome eBay Co. Ltd., a Taiwanese online shopping platform. (PChome eBay Co. Ltd/Internet)

Rising sense of Taiwanese identity amid Covid-19 epidemic

Ng Soon Kiat finds that the “I am from Taiwan” stickers that have popped up recently are not only a utilitarian guard against sinophobia, but possibly a political badge asserting Taiwan’s separate identity.
This handout photo taken and released on 10 February 2020 by Taiwan's Defense Ministry shows a Taiwanese F-16 fighter jet flying next to a Chinese H-6 bomber (top) in Taiwan's airspace. (Handout/Taiwan's Defense Ministry/AFP)

Why is Beijing flexing its military muscle over Taiwan airspace amidst the novel coronavirus crisis?

Taiwan is not the only intended audience for mainland China’s most recent spate of fly-bys over Taiwan airspace. In extraordinary coronavirus times when the government’s authority is being questioned, Beijing flexes its military muscle.
Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen waves to supporters outside her campaign headquarters in Taipei on 11 January 2020. (Sam Yeh/AFP)

Taiwan election: Anti-mainland sentiments and zero cross-strait interaction will continue

On Saturday, Taiwan voted in its presidential election, with incumbent president Tsai Ing-wen of the Democratic Progressive Party returned to office with a resounding 57% of votes, defeating the Kuomintang’s Han Kuo-yu. Ng Soon Kiat analyses the results and what it means for Taiwan politics.
Supporters of Kuomintang's presidential candidate Han Kuo-yu react to his speech during an election rally in Taichung, Taiwan on December 29, 2019. (Ann Wang/Reuters)

Why the 2020 Taiwan presidential election is a battle of the generations

With less than two weeks before Taiwanese head to the polls on 11 January 2020 to elect their next President, generational divides have become more apparent: while the younger generation tend to support Tsai Ing-wen and her progressive reforms on issues such as LGBT rights, the older generation look to Han Kuo-yu for a sense of stability and keeping things as they used to be. Ng Soon Kiat looks at what each generation says about the other, and what the green and blue camps are doing to woo young voters.
A Taiwanese flag is seen as people attend a rally to mark Taiwan's Double Ten Day. (Philip Fong/AFP)

How long more can Tsai Ing-wen avoid the cross-strait issue?

As the Taiwan election approaches, incumbent president Tsai Ing-wen has managed to improve her standing with voters, amid a challenge from Kuomintang candidate Han Kuo-yu. However, one of the issues that Ms Tsai has to address is cross-strait ties with mainland China. How will Ms Tsai show goodwill towards the mainland, while keeping the people of Taiwan happy?
A participant holds a rainbow flag on a balcony during the LGBT Pride parade in Taipei, Taiwan October 26, 2019. (REUTERS/Eason Lam)

Gay rights, Taiwan independence and anti-nuclear issues in the Presidential election

The conflation of gay rights, Taiwan’s independence and anti-nuclear issues can be a recipe for deepening fissures in society. Lianhe Zaobao correspondent Ng Soon Kiat opines that progressive values that are linked together by an election can be held hostage by politicians and political ideologies, and lose their rationality and true meanings.
Taiwan has held its national elections once every four years since 1996, and its voter turnout rate has been decreasing in each election since 2000. (Sam Yeh / AFP)

Who will win the Taiwan presidential election?

With the 2020 Taiwan elections approaching in January, one-third of voters are still undecided. Who will be the next President? What do the opinion polls say? Taipei correspondent Ng Soon Kiat opines that Tsai Ing-wen’s edge over Han Kuo-yu may not be as stable as it seems.