Taiwan vs. China: some facts never mentioned by pro-China forces
Dr. Billy Pan put together some comparisons to highlight the differences between Taiwan and China, which pro-China forces (including the majority of media in Taiwan) would never mention. http://www.wretch.cc/blog/billypan101/11740452
- The size of population in china is 58 times of that in Taiwan but their total national income is only 10 times greater than Taiwan’s.
- Taiwan’s GDP per capita is 5 times more than that of China. Even though China’s economy has been growing rapidly, the gap between Taiwan and China has actually remained the same.
- In terms of PPP, Taiwan ranks 39th in the world whereas China ranks 133rd.
- China’s infant mortality (21.96/1000 live births) is 4 times of that in Taiwan (5.45).
- In China, 8% of the population live under the poverty line whereas there’s only 0.95% in Taiwan.
- The unemployment in Taiwan was 3.9% when the DPP handed it to the KMT and it’s now over 4% after Ma took over but the unemployment in China is estimated to be between 15-20%.
- On average, each individual in Taiwan have 1.06 mobile phones but those in China only have 0.41. In Taiwan, 57% of population have access and use the internet but there’s only 19% in China.
- Looking at Gini Index (the level of economic inequality, the greater the figure, the worse the inequality), Taiwan got 33 in 2000 and fell steadily between 2001 and 2006. China got 41 in 2001 and 47 in 2007. Well, inequality in a ‘communist’ regime is greater than a country generally considered ‘capitalist’?
- Taiwan’s corruption index is 5.7 but China is only 3.5 (worse). Corruption in China seems to be prevalent.
- Most importantly, Taiwan’s press freedom is 10, which ranks 32nd in the world but China is only 89, which is the 163rd place in the world and only better than 6 other countries. In other words, there’s literally NO press freedom in China!
- On average, 550,000 Taiwanese share an airport but in China, 2,840,000 people share an airport.
- The life expectancy in Taiwan is 4.6 years longer than in China.
- Looking at the Global Competitiveness Index, Taiwan is the 14th worldwide (5.25) and China comes the 34th (4.57).
No matter how much China has improved, Taiwan is still ahead of China on various measures. However much China has improved, it’s still a long way to go to bring China to where Taiwan is. The most important point is that not many Taiwanese consider themselves Chinese nor would Taiwanese accept the human rights abuse in China and let go of the freedom and democracy we have fought hard for. Unfortunately, the majority of press in Taiwan are pro-China or even owned by Chinese business and have been exaggerating China’s progress (which is limited to certain areas and certain social circles) and putting Taiwan down whenever they can.
In my opinion, if Taiwan were to unify with China, it would be like a teaspoon of coffee mate going into a big pot of black coffee. I am not convinced that Taiwan would be allowed to follow the HK model because there’s no one else to impress or lure with the HK model after Taiwan is also in their bag. In other words, they don’t have to worry about the image the present to Taiwan or to the world anymore. They can do pretty much anything to anyone especially now the Olympics is out of the way. This notion of ‘constructive engagement’ with China has pretty much failed and worse, it has handed the government the wealth and power to justify dictatorship to their people. Sadly, from my interactions with some highly educated Chinese living in the West, it seems that a lot of them actually buy this argument. Even if Taiwan does follow the HK model, China has broken their promises to HK, which just shows Taiwanese that China cannot be trusted.
As Ma insists on implementing policies that would drain the Taiwanese economy (e.g. encouraging more Taiwanese business to go to China when China’s economy is going downhill; boosting inflation by huge and sudden increases in petrol prices and electricity charges as well as massive government spending on infrastructures or building projects that are clearly not needed), it does make one wonder whether Ma is helping China close the gap between the two countries by dragging Taiwan down and pouring Taiwanese funds into China so that Taiwan can be forced to unify with China. Because democracy has developed for decades in Taiwan, I am worried about the possibility of a massacre in Taiwan if Taiwanese don’t do more right now to stop Ma from handing Taiwan to China.