What Type Of Government Does Taiwan Have?

Taipei, the capital of Taiwan.

Taiwan or the Republic of China is an East Asian state that exists in constant conflict with the People’s Republic of China over who should be China’s legal representative. Taiwan is a self-governing republic which is recognized by a few countries and international bodies. Nonetheless, Taiwan has its own fully functional government. The seat of the government is in Taipei, Taiwan.

An Overview Of The Government Of Taiwan

Taiwan is a multiparty representative democratic republic whose head of state is the president. The Premier is the head of government and president of the Executive Yuan. The government of Taiwan is based on the Three Peoples principle of the "government of the people, by the people, and for the people." The Constitution of the Republic of China maps out the structure of the government and the legal duties of each division. The constitution, effected in mainland China in 1947, was first used in Taiwan in 1987 after the end of the martial rule in Taiwan.

Branches Of The Government Of Taiwan

Taiwan has five government branches (Yuan) which are under the authority of the president. The branches are the executive, legislative, judicial, examination, and control Yuan. The president and the vice president are elected through the popular vote system for two four-year terms.

The Executive Yuan is the highest administrative body, which enforces legislation from the legislative Yuan. The president of the Republic of China appoints the president of the executive and members of the cabinet through approval of the legislature.

The Legislative Yuan has the responsibility of passing laws and overseeing the administration of the government. The unicameral legislature has 113 members: 73 who are elected by popular vote, 34 by proportional representation from a party list and six from aboriginal constituencies. Members of the Assembly serve for four years.

The Judicial Yuan is the legal body of the government with the responsibility of interpreting the Constitution, laws and settling legal disputes. The president of the Republic of China appoints the president and the vice president of the Judicial Yuan by approval of the Legislative Yuan. The judicial branch exists independent of the executive branch.

The Examination Yuan validates civil servants to assess their qualification and suitability for public offices. The Examination Yuan also decides on the salaries and discharge of public servants. Lastly, the control Yuan monitors the executive and public officials and recommends corrective measures or prosecution of public servants.

Elections In Taiwan

Citizens of Taiwan elect members of the legislative and executive bodies through national and local elections. Local and national elections are held every four years and will be held next in 2020. The central election commission is the independent body within the central government with the mandate of supervising the elections. The universal suffrage age in Taiwan is 20 years, and one has to have lived in Taiwan for at least four months for them to vote.

Diplomatic Relations Of Taiwan

Due to the claim by the People’s Republic of China of sovereignty over Taiwan, most international bodies and countries do not recognize the Republic of China as a legitimate state. Before the transfer of its government to Taipei, most international bodies recognized the Republic of China, a status that declined later. Taiwan is recognized by a small number of countries and has unofficial relations with them through representative and consulate offices. Taiwan also maintains cross-strait relations with the US that are facilitated by the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979.


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