A vast majority of respondents in a poll on national identity said they were “Taiwanese,” the Taiwan Thinktank said yesterday.
Regarding national identification, 59.8 percent of respondents said they are Taiwanese, while only 2.9 percent identified as Chinese, Taiwan Thinktank deputy executive-general Doong Sy-chi (董思齊) told a news conference in Taipei, adding that 34 percent of respondents said they identify as Taiwanese and Chinese.
When given only one choice, 84.9 percent identified as Taiwanese, and only 8.7 percent said they were Chinese, Doong said, adding that the findings were consistent with earlier surveys.
About 90 percent of people aged 18 to 29 identify as Taiwanese, while 25 percent of Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) supporters identify as Chinese, Doong said.
Commenting of the growing self-identification as Taiwanese, Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chen Ting-fei (陳亭妃) said: “This is the clear manifestation of national identity.”
However, Taiwan Association of University Professors deputy chairman Chen Li-fu (陳俐甫) said that about 8 percent of Taiwanese would choose the Chinese side “when crunch time comes.”
Lawmakers should amend legislation to better protect national security, for example by limiting Chinese investments in Taiwan, he added.
In the poll, about 60 percent of respondents said that Taiwan’s economy so far fared well during the COVID-19 pandemic, while about 35 percent said that the economy did not perform well enough, the think tank said.
Eighty-two percent said that the government should push Taiwan as a brand to help export-oriented companies, Doong said.
Meanwhile, the survey showed 81.3 percent said they are unwilling to give up the nation's sovereignty in exchange for joining international trade bodies, Doong said.
Fifty-five percent said that Taiwanese firms should cut links to China-dominated supply chains, he said.
A majority thinks that US-led supply chains are better for Taiwan’s economy, while 30 percent think that close ties to Chinese manufacturers are more important, Doong said.
Among the four elected presidents of Taiwan’s democratic era, respondents gave the highest grades to late president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), the think tank said, adding that this reflected strong support for Lee’s policies to develop industries and spur economic growth.
More than 70 percent agreed with Lee’s “go slow, be patient” principle, Doong said, adding that 84.1 percent said they supported Lee’s efforts to integrate Taiwan into the global economy by joining international bodies such as the APEC.
The survey, conducted from Friday to Sunday last week, collected 1,078 valid telephone samples from across Taiwan, and had a confidence level of 95 percent and a margin of error of 3 percentage points.
This story has been amended since it was first published.
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