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Taiwan Country Guide

Explore Taiwan in Asia

Taiwan with the capital city Taipei is located in Asia (Eastern Asia, islands bordering the East China Sea). It covers some 35,980 square kilometres (slightly smaller than Maryland and Delaware combined) with 22,894,384 citizens.

Interactive map of Taiwan

The landscape offers eastern two-thirds mostly rugged mountains with flat to gently rolling plains in west. The average density of population is approximately 636 per km². The notable climate conditions in Taiwan can be described as tropical with marine, rainy season during southwest monsoon (June to August) and cloudiness is persistent and extensive all year. Potential threats by nature are earthquakes or typhoons.

To reach someone in Taiwan dial +886 prior to a number. There are 14,596,000 installed telephones. And there are 26,959,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of 900/1800/3G MHz. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".tw". If you want to bring electric equipment on your trip (e.g. laptop power supply), note the local power outlet of 110V - 60Hz.

About the flag and history of Taiwan

Taiwan Flag Icon

Red field with a dark blue rectangle in the upper hoist-side corner bearing a white sun with 12 triangular rays; the blue and white design of the canton (symbolizing the sun of progress) dates to 1895; it was later adopted as the flag of the Kuomintang Party; blue signifies liberty, justice, and democracy; red stands for fraternity, sacrifice, and nationalism, white represents equality, frankness, and the people's livelihood; the 12 rays of the sun are those of the months and the twelve traditional Chinese hours (each ray equals two hours).

In 1895, military defeat forced China's Qing Dynasty to cede Taiwan to Japan. Taiwan came under Chinese Nationalist control after World War II. Following the Communist victory on the mainland in 1949, 2 million Nationalists fled to Taiwan and established a government using the 1947 constitution drawn up for all of China. Beginning in the 1950s, the ruling authorities gradually democratized and incorporated the local population within the governing structure. This process expanded rapidly in the 1980s. In 2000, Taiwan underwent its first peaceful transfer of power from the Nationalist to the Democratic Progressive Party. Throughout this period, the island prospered and became one of East Asia''s economic "Tigers." The dominant political issues continue to be the relationship between Taiwan and China - specifically the question of Taiwan''s eventual status - as well as domestic political and economic reform.

National administrative regions of Taiwan

Geography Quick-Facts

SummaryContinent: Asia
Capital: Taipei
Size35,980 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 13,891 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
slightly smaller than Maryland and Delaware combined
CurrencyName Dollar, Currency Code:TWD
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD).tw
Telephone Country Prefix+886
Mobile Phone Connections26,959,000
Landline Phone Connections14,596,000

Country Position in World Rankings

Information about single country attributes and how these compare against the rest of the world. The information below is compiled with data from 2013. As such, it may differ a bit to the Information above in the text (which is from 2010).


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Area35,980 (sq km)139

People and Society

Value nameValueWorld Rank
Population23,299,716 51
Population growth rate0.27 (%)170
Birth rate8.61 (births/1,000 population)215
Death rate6.83 (deaths/1,000 population)137
Net migration rate0.91 (migrant(s)/1,000 population)58
Infant mortality rate4.55 (deaths/1,000 live births)186
Life expectancy at birth79.71 (years)39
Total fertility rate1.11 (children born/woman)222


Value nameValueWorld Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity)918,300,000,000 21
GDP - real growth rate1.30 (%)151
GDP - per capita (PPP)39,400 30
Labor force11,300,000 48
Unemployment rate4.30 (%)37
Distribution of family income - Gini index34.20 91
Investment (gross fixed)19.50 (% of GDP)105
Taxes and other revenues12.20 (% of GDP)203
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-1.50 (% of GDP)73
Public debt36.00 (% of GDP)100
Inflation rate (consumer prices)1.90 (%)29
Central bank discount rate1.88 (%)113
Commercial bank prime lending rate2.88 (%)178
Stock of narrow money407,800,000,000 13
Stock of broad money1,119,000,000,000 17
Stock of domestic credit772,000,000,000 20
Market value of publicly traded shares784,100,000,000 18
Industrial production growth rate-0.10 (%)148
Current account balance40,880,000,000 12
Exports301,100,000,000 20
Imports270,700,000,000 20
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold408,500,000,000 6
Debt - external127,400,000,000 44
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home58,400,000,000 51
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad220,800,000,000 21


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Electricity - production252,200,000,000 (kWh)18
Electricity - consumption242,200,000,000 (kWh)16
Electricity - installed generating capacity48,750,000 (kW)19
Electricity - from fossil fuels77.20 (% of total installed capacity)96
Electricity - from nuclear fuels10.60 (% of total installed capacity)19
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants5.30 (% of total installed capacity)126
Electricity - from other renewable sources6.90 (% of total installed capacity)31
Crude oil - production808,700 (bbl/day)26
Crude oil - imports794,900 (bbl/day)14
Crude oil - proved reserves2,800,000 (bbl)98
Refined petroleum products - production920,200 (bbl/day)23
Refined petroleum products - consumption786,100 (bbl/day)25
Refined petroleum products - exports255,000 (bbl/day)25
Refined petroleum products - imports304,700 (bbl/day)22
Natural gas - production330,200,000 (cu m)74
Natural gas - consumption16,370,000,000 (cu m)39
Natural gas - imports15,900,000,000 (cu m)20
Natural gas - proved reserves6,229,000,000 (cu m)84
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy251,400,000 (Mt)26


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Telephones - main lines in use16,907,000 17
Telephones - mobile cellular28,865,000 34
Internet hosts6,272,000 18
Internet users16,147,000 24


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Airports40 105
Railways1,580 (km)79
Roadways41,475 (km)87
Merchant marine112 47


Value nameValueWorld Rank
Military expenditures2.20 (% of GDP)63

Data based on CIA facts book 2010 & 2013, wikipedia, national statistical offices and their census releases

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