Taiwan, China flag Taiwan, China: Contexto político-econômico

Valores de comércio de Taiwan, China

Foreign Trade in Figures

Foreign trade has been the engine of Taiwan's rapid growth during the past 40 years. Taiwan is very open to international trade, which represented over 70% of GDP in 2022 (Trading Economics, 2023). Main exports include electrical equipment, machinery, computers, plastics, medical apparatus, mineral fuels and vehicles;  while imports include electrical equipment, mineral fuels, machinery and computers. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is forecasting an increase of 3% in the volume of exports of goods and services of the country in 2023, after an increase of 0.8% in 2022, and an increase of 4.1% of its imports, after an increase of 2.4% in 2022.

Taiwan's economy is export-oriented and its composition have changed from predominantly agricultural commodities to industrial goods (now 98%) during the past 40 years. Main exports products are: electronics (33.1% of total), information, communication and audio-video products (10.8%), base metals (8.8%), plastics & rubber (7.1%), machinery (7.5 percent). Main exports partners are Mainland China & Hong Kong (40% of total), ASEAN countries (18.3%), USA (12%), Europe (9%) and Japan with 7% (Trading Economics, 2022).

A lack of natural resources had made Taiwan dependent on imports. Taiwan imports mostly parts of electronic products (18.2% of total), mineral products (15.2%), machinery (12.4%), chemicals (10.8%) and base metals (7.3%). Main import partners are Mainland China & Hong Kong (19.6% of total), Japan (17.6%), Europe (12.6%), USA (12.4%), ASEAN countries (11.8%) and Middle East (7.7%).

Since Taiwan's economy is highly export-oriented, it depends on a regime open to international trade and remains vulnerable to fluctuations in the global economy. Political tensions between separatist and reunificationists in Taiwan made reaching policy consensus difficult. The United States commercial battle against China has increased risk in Asian economies. Lack of international recognition from other countries also complicates Taiwan's international position.

Taiwan exported USD 330.6 billion of goods and USD 51.4 billion of services in 2021, and imported USD 287.1 billion of goods and USD 56.3 billion of services (WTO, 2023). Electronics industry is the largest industrial export sector and it receives the most US investment. Indeed, Taiwan logged a 52 Billion USD trade surplus in 2022 on strong exports of electronic product parts (Market Screeners, 2023). Taiwan's membership in the WTO as an independent economy has also supported its commerce since 2002. The island has also a free trade agreement with New Zealand.

Foreign Trade Values 20182019202020212022
Imports of Goods (million USD) 286,333287,164288,053382,101435,835
Exports of Goods (million USD) 335,909330,622347,193447,693477,778
Imports of Services (million USD) 56,83156,90237,45739,56745,239
Exports of Services (million USD) 50,20951,83841,21051,99558,350

Source: World Trade Organisation (WTO) ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Forecasts 2023 (e)2024 (e)2025 (e)2026 (e)2027 (e)
Volume of exports of goods and services (Annual % change)
Volume of imports of goods and services (Annual % change) -

Source: IMF, World Economic Outlook ; Latest available data

Note: (e) Estimated Data

International Economic Cooperation
Taiwan is a member of the following international economic organisations: ICC, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), WTO, International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), among others. For the full list of economic and other international organisations in which participates Taiwan click here. International organisation membership of Taiwan is also outlined here.
Free Trade Agreements
The complete and up-to-date list of Free Trade Agreements signed by Taiwan can be consulted here.

To go further, check out our service Import Export Flows.

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Últimas atualizações em November 2023