People have continued to migrate to northern Taiwan from the south in large numbers in the past six years, raising concerns over imbalanced population migration and regional development, according to the latest migration statistics released by the Ministry of the Interior.
More than 160,000 people migrated to northern Taiwan from abroad or other parts of the country between January 2008 and December last year, while central, southern and eastern Taiwan all experienced net population outflows, the statistics showed.
During the six-year period, New Taipei City (新北市), Taoyuan County, Greater Taichung, Kinmen County and Hsinchu County saw the biggest population inflows, while Changhua County and Pingtung County, both heavily reliant on agriculture, had the biggest population outflows.
The ministry said Kinmen County’s six-year population growth of 36,974 could be a result of its social welfare program and the impact of the “small three links” policy with China.
Deputy Minister of the Interior Hsiao Chia-chi (蕭家淇) said measures would be taken to improve infrastructure and social welfare, and help young people stay in less-developed areas, while urban planning would have to be reviewed in densely populated cities to satisfy the public’s needs.
Last year, 8,077 people moved to Taoyuan County, which had the biggest population inflow in the nation, followed by 7,351 in Greater Taichung and 6,828 in Kinmen County. Changhua suffered the biggest outflow, with 6,148 people migrating out of the county, the ministry’s statistics showed.
Taiwan had a net migration inflow of about 14,000 people last year, which represented 25.1 percent of the total population increase, the ministry said.
Another recent phenomenon is that the nation’s gender ratio (males per 100 females) dipped below 100 for the first time to 99.99, according to the ministry’s statistics released early last month. This means that the female population in Taiwan surpassed the male population for the first time in the past century.
The ministry said it expected the ratio to consistently decrease in the future, but added that the gender ratio in most advanced democracies is below 100.