Getting a bead on China’s diplomacy

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou enter the ballroom at the Shangri-la Hotel in Singapore, 07 November 2015. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

The meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou in Singapore on 7 November was widely interpreted as another perhaps-ill-advised Chinese intervention in Taiwan’s electoral processes. This idea doesn’t stack up for several reasons. Read more…

What comes after the Ma–Xi meeting?

Taiwanese newspaper front-pages are dominated by reports and photos of the the meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Taiwan's President Ma Ying-jeou in Singapore, 8 November 2015. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Peter Yuan Cai, Melbourne

Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou met with Chinese President Xi Jinping in the first ever meeting between the leaders of the two countries on 7 November 2015 in Singapore.

The timing of the meeting is interesting and controversial. President Ma is an unpopular president whose term is about to end. His party, the Kuomintang (KMT), is widely predicted to lose both the next presidential and parliamentary elections. Read more…

The Xi–Ma meeting signals a new era in China–Taiwan relations

Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) and Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou wave to the crowd of media before their historic meeting at Shangrila hotel in Singapore, Nov. 7, 2015. (Photo: AAP)

Authors: Sheryn Lee and Benjamin Schreer

The historic meeting in Singapore between Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Taiwanese counterpart, Ma Ying-jeou, on 7 November was the first ever between the leaders of the two countries. With the next Taiwanese presidential elections only two months away, the meeting was seen by many observers as a last-minute attempt by the Chinese government to persuade the Taiwanese electorate that the ruling Kuomintang (KMT) remains the best choice for dealing with Beijing. Read more…

Taiwan gears up for all-female presidential race

Taiwan's main opposition Democratic Progressive Party, DPP, Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen speaks in Taipei, Taiwan. (Photo:AAP).

Author: Chen-shen Yen, National Chengchi University

With legislator and Deputy Speaker Hung Hsiu-chu confirmed by the Standing Committee of the Nationalist Party or Kuomintang (KMT), the presidential candidates for the two main parties contending for Taiwan’s 2016 election are both women, leading to the foregone conclusion that there will be a female president in Taiwan next year. Read more…

Taiwan: voting for stable relations with China?

Chinese President Xi Jinping meets with Eric Chu, the head of Taiwan's ruling Nationalist Party in Beijing, 4 May 2015. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Sheryn Lee, ANU

China–Taiwan cross-Strait relations are under renegotiation in the face of significant domestic developments in Taiwan. These developments include the ruling Kuomintang’s (KMT) resounding defeat in the local ‘nine-in-one’ elections in November 2014, the influence of the Sunflower student movement, and the predicted opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) win in the January 2016 presidential and legislative elections. Read more…

Taiwan biding its time on AIIB membership is no bad thing

President Ma Ying-jeou of Taiwan has described Taiwan as a potential beneficiary of the China-led international financial institution. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Emily S. Chen, Hoover Institution

Taiwan has unsurprisingly been rejected as a founding member of the China-proposed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). But standing outside the AIIB tent may not be a bad thing for Taiwan. It offers the Taiwanese government a chance to observe the still-opaque intents and terms of the AIIB and to buy time to address concerns about how and why Taiwan should join the Chinese initiative. Read more…

Can Taiwan survive in the shadow of China?

Taiwanese students wear colourful hats during the national day anniversary in front of the Presidential Palace in Taipei on 10 October 2014. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

In the past decade and a half, despite some ups and downs, economic and then political relations between Taiwan and mainland China have gone from strength to strength. The election of Chen Shui-bian as President of Taiwan in 2000 saw a period in which political relations were tense, even though trade shares multiplied rapidly. Read more…