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Taiwan: Economy

Economy Taiwan
Economy - overview:
Taiwan has a dynamic capitalist economy with gradually decreasing guidance of investment and foreign trade by government authorities. In keeping with this trend, some large government-owned banks and industrial firms are being privatized. Exports have provided the primary impetus for industrialization. The trade surplus is substantial, and foreign reserves are the world's third largest. Agriculture contributes 2% to GDP, down from 32% in 1952. While Taiwan is a major investor throughout Southeast Asia, China has become the largest destination for investment and has overtaken the US to become Taiwan's largest export market. Because of its conservative financial approach and its entrepreneurial strengths, Taiwan suffered little compared with many of its neighbors from the Asian financial crisis in 1998. The global economic downturn, combined with problems in policy coordination by the administration and bad debts in the banking system, pushed Taiwan into recession in 2001, the first year of negative growth ever recorded. Unemployment also reached record levels. Output recovered moderately in 2002 in the face of continued global slowdown, fragile consumer confidence, and bad bank loans. Growing economic ties with China are a dominant long-term factor. Exports to China - mainly parts and equipment for the assembly of goods for export to developed countries - drove Taiwan's economic recovery in 2002.
GDP:
purchasing power parity - $406 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
3.5% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
purchasing power parity - $18,000 (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 2%
industry: 31%
services: 67% (2002 est.)
Population below poverty line:
1% (2000 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 6.4%
highest 10%: 41.1% (2002 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
32.6 (2000)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
-0.2% (2002 est.)
Labor force:
10 million (2003)
Labor force - by occupation:
services 58%, industry 35%, agriculture 7% (2001 est.)
Unemployment rate:
5.2% (2002 est.)
Budget:
revenues: $36 billion
expenditures: $36.1 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2002 est.)
Industries:
electronics, petroleum refining, chemicals, textiles, iron and steel, machinery, cement, food processing
Industrial production growth rate:
6% (2002)
Electricity - production:
151.1 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 71.4%
hydro: 6%
other: 0% (2001)
nuclear: 22.6%
Electricity - consumption:
140.5 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2001)
Oil - production:
1,100 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption:
988,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports:
NA (2001)
Oil - imports:
NA (2001)
Oil - proved reserves:
2 million bbl (37257)
Natural gas - production:
750 million cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
6.64 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - exports:
410 million cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - imports:
6.3 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves:
38.23 billion cu m (37257)
Agriculture - products:
rice, corn, vegetables, fruit, tea; pigs, poultry, beef, milk; fish
Exports:
$130 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports - commodities:
machinery and electrical equipment 54%, metals, textiles, plastics, chemicals (2002)
Exports - partners:
Hong Kong 23.9%, US 20.8%, Japan 9.3%, China 7.7% (2002)
Imports:
$113 billion f.o.b. (2002)
Imports - commodities:
machinery and electrical equipment 44.5%, minerals, precision instruments (2002)
Imports - partners:
Japan 24.3%, US 16.1%, China 7.1%, South Korea 6.9% (2002)
Debt - external:
$24.7 billion (2002)
Currency:
new Taiwan dollar (TWD)
Currency code:
TWD
Exchange rates:
34.88 (2002), 34.74 (2001), 33.09 (2000), 31.6 (1999)
Fiscal year:
1 July - 30 June (up to FY98/99); 1 July 1999 - 31 December 2000 for FY00; calendar year (after FY00)

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Source: The CIA World Fact Book 2003

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