Taiwan

A vendor (centre) sells meat at her stall in front of a residential building in Hanoi, Vietnam on 31 March 2021. (Manan Vatsyayana/AFP)

Shifting supply chains from China to Southeast Asia is hard but necessary

Amid the effects of the China-US trade war and the Covid-19 pandemic, global manufacturers are seeing the need to adopt a ”China+1“ strategy by diversifying their supply chains or business operations beyond China. However, moving parts of the supply chain to the Southeast Asian region is not so straightforward. What challenges do they face and how are they overcoming them? Will China's position as the "world's factory" be shaken and how will its economic model be changed?
Soldiers wait for buses to return back to their base, at Liberty Square in Taipei, Taiwan, 16 May 2021. (Ann Wang/Reuters)

Taiwanese youth: Taiwan not the 'most dangerous place on earth'

People often compare Taiwan and mainland China, and even the Taiwanese knock themselves for lagging behind, especially in terms of economy and business. One frequent comment is that Taiwan is content with “small blessings”. Social entrepreneur and columnist Jack Huang disagrees, saying that the youth in Taiwan are channelling their energy into worthy causes and working hard towards building an inclusive society and a better world for everyone.
A Taiwan Navy honour guard looks on in front of a Taiwan flag during the launch ceremony for the Taiwan Navy's domestically built amphibious transport dock "Yushan" in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, 13 April 2021. (Ann Wang/Reuters)

Will the Taiwan Strait issue be internationalised under Biden?

Mainland China has most recently sent 28 aircraft close to Taiwan, prompting concerns that the situation in the Taiwan Strait might boil over, not least with US-led actions possibly internationalising the issue. What’s the true temperature of the situation? Zaobao correspondent Yang Danxu reports.
Cartoon: Heng Kim Song

ThinkCartoon

Heng Kim Song has been the freelance editorial cartoonist

The Grand Hotel is illuminated with the Chinese characters '平安' (Peace) in Taipei, Taiwan, 3 June 2021. (Billy H.C. Kwok/Bloomberg)

Taiwanese art historian: What flowers and swallows taught me about life amid the pandemic

As art historian Chiang Hsun recites the Diamond Sutra and prays for the world amid the coronavirus pandemic, he believes in the adage that "this too shall pass". In tough times, we must remind ourselves to be grateful for the breath of life and to be kind to one another. May humankind be safe and well in their warm homes, wherever they may be.
Japan's Ground Self-Defense Forces (JGSDF) soldiers wearing protective face masks arrive for a live fire exercise at JGSDF's training grounds in the East Fuji Maneuver Area in Gotemba, Japan, on 22 May 2021. A key part of US President Joe Bidens foreign policy has been turning to allies for support in addressing the security risks posed by the likes of China and North Korea, placing a greater emphasis on the Indo-Pacific region. (Akio Kon/Bloomberg)

What removing the defence budget cap means for Japan’s role in the Indo-Pacific

​Since 1976, Japan’s defence budget has traditionally been capped at 1% of its GDP. However, in a recent interview, Japanese Defence Minister Nobuo Kishi said that this self-imposed limit would effectively be removed.
Wang Xiaofei and Barbie Hsu participated as a couple in the Chinese reality show Happiness Trio (幸福三重奏) in 2018. (Internet)

What does a celebrity’s divorce rumours tell us about cross-strait relations?

Social media went into overdrive when news that Taiwanese actress Barbie Hsu and mainland Chinese hotelier Wang Xiaofei were headed for divorce surfaced. It appears that a difference in views on cross-strait issues could have been the cause. Whether the news is just a smokescreen or a reality, the prickly views expressed are symptomatic of declining relations between Taiwan and the mainland.
A man crossing the road at Ximending shopping area in Taipei's Wanhua district, Taiwan on 28 May 2021. (Ben Blanchard/Reuters)

Hong Kong-Taiwan relations take a nosedive as cross-strait relations worsen

Hong Kong-Taiwan relations have waxed and waned with the state of cross-strait relations. Following increased tensions after the DPP government came to power and the perceived convergence of “Hong Kong independence” and “Taiwan independence” forces, calling a temporary halt to organisations like the Hong Kong Economic, Trade and Cultural Office (HKETCO) in Taiwan could be the writing on the wall of cross-strait and Hong Kong-Taiwan relations.
People fish at the Sun Moon Lake amid low water levels during an islandwide drought in Nantou, Taiwan on 15 May 2021. (Annabelle Chih/Reuters)

Faced with a shortage of water, electricity and vaccines, can Taiwan still deliver the chips?

Water, electricity and Covid-19 vaccines — critical elements to keep Taiwan’s leading chip industry going — are in short supply. The situation is currently manageable, say industry watchers, but if this goes on, can Taiwan withstand the pressure and continue delivering the goods to the world?