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Reforms in Taiwan after 1949: Tough Decisions Made at Stake (Special Issue No.51,2015)


By Wang Yingying, Research Team on “Methodology of Reform”, Research Department of Macro-Economy of DRC

Research Report [Special Issue No.51 (Total 1454), 2015] 2015-12-25

Abstract: Taiwan authorities have carried out a series of reforms in the field of land, taxation, industry, finance etc. since the retreat of Kuomintang (KMT) to Taiwan in 1949. These reforms boosted economic growth, helping Taiwan to step out of the shadow of economic crisis in the early postwar period and develop into an advanced economy as one of the Four Asian Tigers by its exceptionally high growth rate between 1960s and 1990s. Reviewing the past history from the perspective of methodology-based reform, the keys to Taiwan’s above-mentioned success lie in the following facts: choose reform measures through thorough deliberations, authorize a body that could keep aloof from rights and interests to lead the designing and implementation of the reform plan, maximize opportunities for experts and technocrats to play a constructive role, get a right start to the breakthrough in reform, boost public’s confidence by presenting the achievements of reform at different stages, lead different interest groups by market means, and reduce the cost of reform, etc. The relevant experience could be referred to in the upcoming reforms in mainland China.

Key words: reform in Taiwan, reform breakthrough, technocrat