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TAIWAN ECONOMY: 2019 Q3 UPDATE

SUMMARY:

Taiwan’sQ3economicgrowthwas 2.99%, which was higher than expected. The government credits this to trade diversion from the US-China trade war and companies relocating some production and investment back to Taiwan (though this is disputed by the opposition KMT). Taiwan’s stock market was on track for its best year for almost three decades. Taiwan’s presidential election and legislative election are scheduled on 11 January 2020.

All public polls, from both ends of the political spectrum, have Tsai significantly ahead in the Presidential race, while legislative elections will be closer with competition among DPP, KMT and smaller political parties. China’s tourism ban reduced monthly Chinese visitor number by almost half, though overall tourism numbers decreased only 3% and November even recorded the highest number of annual visitors. On the other hand, China emphasised the benefits brought by the cross-Strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement, with media speculating potential termination by China in 2020. In addition, China announced 26 measures to attract Taiwanese business people and individuals to China. Taiwan’s first commercial offshore wind farm, Formosa 1, came onstream in November, while UK Export Finance announced a £230m deal to support Taiwan’s Formosa 2 wind farm.

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