Taiwan improves two places in democracy index

Staff writer, with CNA

Thu, Mar 21, 2013 - Page 3

Taiwan’s democracy ranking improved two spots in the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Democracy Index last year from 2011, to 35th in the world and third in Asia.

The report shows that Taiwan had an overall score of 7.57 last year, up from 7.46 in 2011.

Taiwan was ranked 32nd in the first index, 33rd in 2008, 36th in 2010 and 37th in 2011. No reports were published for 2007 and 2009.

The index is based on five categories — electoral process and pluralism; the functioning of government; political culture; civil liberties; and political participation.

Taiwan scored the same in the first four categories as last time, but scored an improved 6.11 out of 10 in the political participation category last year, up from 5.56 the previous year.

According to the report, Taiwan is one of 54 countries that fall into the index’s “flawed democracies” category, along with Hong Kong, which is ranked 63rd in the world.

Only 25 countries, representing 11.3 percent of the global population, are ranked as “full democracies.” Japan (23rd) and South Korea (20th) are the only two Asian countries among the 25 full democracies.