Fri, Jun 30, 2006 - Page 2 News List

Taiwanese respect Japan and US the most

INTERNATIONAL VIEWS A survey reveals that China is also increasingly admired but that only a tiny percentage of respondents believed Taiwan had a high international status

By Jean Lin  /  STAFF REPORTER

The foreign countries held in the highest estimation by Taiwanese are Japan and the US, according to a survey released yesterday.

The survey was conducted last month by the magazine Global Views Monthly that polled 1,071 people nationwide on how the Taiwanese public viewed other countries and international affairs.

The survey also ranked Japan and the US as the most popular travel, immigration and study destinations.

Of 166 countries in the world, 47.5 percent of respondents said they admired Japan the most, followed by the US with 40.3 percent.

Shaun Yu (游常山), a senior writer for the magazine, said the percentages were an indication that a high standard of living was considered important by the Taiwanese public since both Japan and the US are highly regarded in this respect.

Yu said that China ranked third on the "most admired" list, with 15.8 percent, which showed that the public recognized China's increasing importance on the world stage and no longer viewed it as a poor, under-developed country.

The survey also indicated that in terms of international affairs, the public was most interested in economic affairs, which received a 39 percent rating, followed by news of disasters at 33 percent, and war news at 22.9 percent.

However, the public relied on the media for information on international affairs, Yu said.

Few people received information from foreign friends, by means of travel or by studying abroad, he added.

In terms of Taiwan's international status, 56.6 percent polled felt that Taiwan was ranked low and only 3.4 percent felt it ranked high.

Yu said that this was probably a reflection of the ambiguous status of Taiwan internationally.

Also, 46.7 percent of respondents felt that Taiwan was a wealthy country, while 36 percent felt that it was poor.

As many as 84 percent said that their foreign language skills were "bad" or "very bad."

The public also felt that civic organizations and businesses contributed most to Taiwan's internationalization, both polling over 30 percent, with the government polling 12.2 percent.

As for businesses, 38.1 percent of respondents felt that Formosa Plastics Group best represented Taiwan's internationalization.

The survey was conducted via the telephone targeting those over 20 years old with a 3 percent margin of error.

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