Taiwan grew faster than China for the first time since 1990 in 2020

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Taiwan's economic output grew by 2.98 percent, that of China “only” by 2.3 percent.

Taiwan grew faster than China for the first time since 1990 in 2020

Taiwan's economy grew faster than the Chinese one for the first time in three decades in Corona year 2020. The gross domestic product increased by 2.98 percent compared to the previous year, as the statistics office announced on Friday. This makes the island one of the few economies that achieved a plus in the pandemic year.

Strong demand

Statistics official Wu Pei-hsuan said it was the first time since 1990 that Taiwan grew faster than the People's Republic. This achieved an increase of 2.3 percent. Taiwan got the corona crisis under control early on and avoided hard lockdowns. The borders, however, remain largely closed. The island is currently battling a small outbreak of inland infections.

At the end of the year, the Taiwanese economy gained momentum and grew faster than it had in almost a decade. The gross domestic product rose from October to December by 4.94 percent compared to the same period last year. Economists polled by Reuters had only expected an increase of 3.6 percent.

The reason for the unexpectedly good performance is the strong global demand for technology products from the island – such as electronics, which are required for the expansion of the new 5G mobile communications standard. Computers and related accessories are also in demand around the world, as the pandemic has meant that millions have to work from home and need new technology. Exports for electronics and telecommunications products rose by around 20 percent in the past quarter.

Increase capacities

In view of the shortage of semiconductors, German car manufacturers are dependent on help from Taiwan. Economy Minister Wang Mei-hua said Wednesday that it would take time to resolve the problem. Four leading Taiwanese chipmakers have promised to prioritize supplies for automakers in view of the global shortage of chips for the industry. The companies are ready to increase their capacities as much as possible and to negotiate with other customers in order to put the supply of car chips at the top.

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