Sat, May 21, 2016 - Page 1 News List

President Tsai Ing-wen’s inaugural address


The following is the full text of President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) inaugural address as released by the Presidential Office yesterday:

Esteemed heads of state and guests from our diplomatic allies, distinguished ambassadors and representatives, dear friends, our fellow citizens across the country:

Our Gratitude and Responsibilities

Just moments ago, in the Presidential Office Building, Dr. Chen Chien-jen (陳建仁) and I were officially sworn in as the 14th President and Vice President of the Republic of China. We must express our gratitude to this land for nurturing us and to the people for placing their trust in us. Most importantly, we deeply appreciate the democratic institutions of this country, which have allowed us to accomplish Taiwan’s third transition of political power through a peaceful electoral process. We also overcame many uncertainties throughout four months-long transition period that concluded peacefully today.

Once again, the people of Taiwan have shown the world through our actions that we, as a free and democratic people, are committed to the defense of our freedom and democracy as a way of life. Each and every one of us participated in this journey. My dear fellow Taiwanese, we did it.

I would like to tell you that, regarding the results of the January 16th elections, I have always had one interpretation only. The people elected a new president and new government with one single expectation: solving problems.

At this very moment, Taiwan faces a difficult situation that requires its leaders to shoulder the burdens without hesitation. This is something I will not forget. I would also like to tell you that, the multitude of challenges before us require that we face them honestly and shoulder the responsibilities together.

Therefore, this speech is an invitation. I invite every fellow citizen to carry the future of this country.

It is not the leader who makes a country great; it is the collective striving of the people that makes this country great. A president should not only unite her own supporters; she should unite the entire country. To stand united for change -- that is my earnest hope for this country. Here, I sincerely call on everyone to give this country a chance.

Let us leave behind the prejudices and conflicts of the past, and together fulfill the mission that the new era has entrusted to us.

At this moment and as President, I declare to the citizens of this country that my administration will demonstrate resolve in spearheading this country’s reform, and will never back down.

Building a Better Country for the Younger Generation

The path forward is not a smooth one. Taiwan needs a new government that readily takes on each and every challenge. And it is my job to lead such a government.

Our pension system will go bankrupt without reform.

Our rigid educational system is increasingly out of touch with society. Our energy and resources are limited, and our economy lacks momentum, with the old model of OEM manufacturing facing a bottleneck. This country urgently needs a new model for economic development.

Our population is rapidly aging, while the long-term care system remains inadequate.

Our birthrate remains low, while a sound childcare system seems a distant prospect.

Our environment still suffers from severe pollution.

Our country’s fiscal situation is far from optimistic.

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