The Ministry of National Defense’s annual National Defense Report, released yesterday, outlines the capability of domestic weapons, Taiwan’s increasing role in regional security and strategies for countering the continual threat of China’s military.
The main theme of the report is the military as a “defender of peace,” as it joins with Australia, Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand in promoting the US’ Indo-Pacific strategy.
The nation’s indigenous defense industry has greatly evolved since President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) took office, ministry spokesman Shih Shun-wen (史順文) told a news conference in Taipei.
The industry’s advancement has sustained existing projects and initiated new programs, including the manufacture of precision-fire missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), armored personnel carriers, Tuo Jiang-class guided-missile corvettes and submarines, the report said.
“The main military threat still comes from China, as its top leaders have not renounced the use of force to invade Taiwan, have spent a substantial portion of the national budget on increasing its military strength and moved to quickly modernize its armed forces. By trying to unilaterally alter the status quo across the Taiwan Strait, China poses the most serious challenge for Taiwan’s national security,” the report quoted Defense Policy Division Director Teng Keh-syong (鄧克雄) as saying.
Included in the report is a map showing the expanded range of China’s Dongfeng ballistic missiles. The earlier version could already reach Taiwan and most of Southeast Asia with its range of 1,000km.
The upgraded Dongfeng 10 and 21 has a range of 1,600km and can reach all of Japan, much of India and the Asia-Pacific region’s “second island chain.”
The ministry has a new telecommunications unit to combat fake news and misinformation regarding the military, Teng said, adding that through QR codes and the ministry’s Web sites, the unit can engage with the public and the media to rapidly correct false information.
The report was released with a summarized, comic book version that targets the younger generation so that the public can understand the nation’s defense programs and military strategies.
For the first time, the report presents new coastal defense plans to repel a force invading across the Taiwan Strait.
Previously, the military saw beaches as the focal point for repelling a potential invasion, but in 2017 that strategy was revised to include a broader perimeter, the report says.
Taiwan has been forced to shift its strategy as China has been developing expeditionary warfare and over-the-horizon amphibious assault capabilities that pose a threat all along Taiwan’s coastline, Teng said.
The report contains an illustration of how the military would repel an invasion of naval and aerial units, targeting a landing site along Taiwan’s coast.
It shows the nation’s larger warships and naval vessels being deployed along a perimeter in coastal areas as a first line of defense against possible invaders.
Behind those vessels, naval mines are used as a second line of defense, followed by Tuo Jiang-class corvettes and smaller naval vessels, while armored vehicles, tanks, multiple rocket launchers and other weapons systems are deployed on beaches.
It shows precision-fire missiles and military aircraft being used as further deterrence — all as part of the military’s “multiple deterrence” strategy adopted in 2017.
Additional reporting by CNA
Taipei on Friday rejected Hanoi’s characterization of its recent live-fire drill near Itu Aba Island (Taiping Island, 太平島) as “illegal,” saying that Taiwan’s claim to the small island in the South China Sea was “unquestionable.” The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said in a statement that the comments made by its Vietnamese counterpart about the military’s routine live-fire drills near Itu Aba on Tuesday were “unacceptable.” Earlier on Friday, Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang called Taiwan’s military activity “a serious violation of Vietnam’s territorial sovereignty,” saying it had caused tensions and complicated the situation in the region. Hang
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) yesterday said it is more than doubling its US investment to US$40 billion as it plans to make 3-nanometer chips in 2026 at a second Arizona fab, adding to the chipmaker’s original plan of building a US$12 billion fab to make 4-nanometer chips in 2024. The investment would mark the largest foreign direct investment in Arizona’s history and one of the largest foreign direct investments in the history of the US, the world’s largest contract chipmaker said in a statement yesterday. In addition to the more than 10,000 construction workers at the site, TSMC’s two fabs
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) is planning to offer advanced 4-nanometer chips when its new US$12 billion plant in Arizona opens in 2024, an upgrade from its previous public statements, after US customers such as Apple Inc pushed the company to do so, according to people familiar with the matter. TSMC is expected to announce the new plan when US President Joe Biden and US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo visit the facility near Phoenix for a ceremony on Tuesday next week, the people said. The TSMC plant had been slated to make 5-nanometer semiconductors, a standard that would be far
PRESIDENTIAL OFFICE MEETING: The statement by the former US representative came as Congress is poised to back US$10 billion to bolster Taiwan’s self-defense capabilities Former US representative Will Hurd yesterday said visiting Taiwan has made him realize that China’s “one country, two systems” framework is not a feasible solution for Taiwan. Hurd, who is visiting Taiwan with an international delegation, made the remarks when meeting with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) at the Presidential Office in Taipei. There is bipartisan support for Taiwan in Washington, with Republicans and Democrats agreeing that only the 23.5 million Taiwanese can decide the nation’s future, said Hurd, a trustee at the Washington-based German Marshall Fund think tank. Former German lawmaker Marieluise Beck said that the Russian invasion of Ukraine has changed mindsets