Taiwan’s fate tied to Tsai’s New Southbound Policy

A map showing the countries included in the New Southbound Policy
President Tsai Ing-wen’s New Southbound Policy is an expansion of previous initiatives and aims to strengthen ties with 18 countries in the region (source: macpixxel for GIS)
  • Beijing is highly uncomfortable with Taiwan’s new government
  • It is stepping up political, economic and military pressure against the island
  • President Tsai’s New Southbound Policy aims to counter China’s moves
  • Its success or failure could have a big impact on Taiwan’s sovereignty

Taiwan faces a major problem. In 2016, its people elected President Tsai Ing-wen, whose party, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) is despised in Beijing for its commitment to independence. Unlike Taiwan’s Nationalist Party (also called Kuomintang, or KMT) which once fought the Communists for control of the mainland and still maintains that there is only one China – even if it disputes Beijing’s claim to it – the DPP has no desire for unification.

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