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London School of Economics and Political Science
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Professor Stephan Feuchtwang
s.feuchtwang@lse.ac.uk

Dr Fang-Long Shih
f.shih@lse.ac.uk

Taiwan's Statecraft for Economic Resilience amid Globalization

With Professor Peter C.Y. Chow

Seminar on Taiwan in Global Comparative Perspective

Series:  Seminar on Taiwan in Comparative Perspective

The LSE Taiwan Research Programme is pleased to announce a seminar for Tuesday 14 June, from 6–8pm. Taiwan's new President, Tsai Ing-wen, recently gave her inauguration speech. She said: "The most formidable task that the new administration must take on is to transform Taiwan's economic structure". Further, "In order to completely transform Taiwan's economy, from this moment on, we must bravely chart a different course - and that is to build a 'New Model for Economic Development' for Taiwan."

It is our pleasure to have Peter C.Y. Chow, Professor of economics at the Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership at the City College of New York, who is going to respond to this call and who will speak on his latest research. This seminar is a great opportunity to hear Professor Chow's ideas and also to have a dialogue with him about the new model for Taiwan's economic development.

Seminar: Taiwan’s Statecraft for Economic Resilience amid Globalization

Speaker: Professor Peter C.Y. Chow (City University of New York)

Time: Tuesday June 14 from 6–8pm

Venue: Seligman Library, 6th Floor, Old Building, LSE

Chair: Dr Fang-long Shih (LSE Taiwan Research Programme)

Discussants: Dr Catherine Thomas (LSE Management)

UPDATE: Dr Thomas's comments are available online.

Abstract

Taiwan's decelerating growth since 2000 has been due to lack of government leadership, rather than lack of capital. Re-building public confidence in the government and closing the "credibility gap" is the key to enhancing the "animal spirit" of private enterprise. To revitalize Taiwan’s economy, the new DPP Administration needs to have a stimulus package and a modest budget deficit, and to restore the budget balance over the business cycle.

Previously, the benefits from triangular trade under manufacturing subcontracts were not shared by Taiwan's domestic labour force. Hence, income distribution deteriorated while capital outflows accelerated. However, the importance of export to Taiwan's GDP growth cannot be ignored while domestic sectors develop. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) provides a window of opportunity for Taiwan to diversify its trade-investment flows and to restructure its industry to become globally competitive, and to de-regulate unnecessary government restrictions on business enterprise while maintaining international labour standards.

Before it joins the TPP, Taiwan needs to prepare for its membership application by re-structuring not only its manufacturing industry, but also its agriculture and service sectors. However, government support for industrial development must be subject to public scrutiny; a combined "incomes policy" and "social welfare policy" can mitigate the legacies of "trickledown economics" and lessen income inequality.

About the Speaker

Peter Chow is a professor of economics at the City College and Graduate Centre, City University of New York. He was a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and a contractual consultant for the World Bank. He has been a visiting research fellow at the University of California at Berkeley, the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, and visiting professor at Nagoya National University, Academia Sinica and National Taiwan University. His major interest is in economic development and trade, with a focus on late industrialized countries in East Asia. He is the author of Trade and Industrial Development in East Asia, published by Edward Elgar in 2012.

In addition, he has published more than 50 articles in academic journals and as book chapters, and has presented more than 100 papers at academic conferences and think-tanks. Since 1998, he has been the Executive Director of the American Association for Chinese Studies, and economics editor for the American Journal for Chinese Studies. He has also edited more than 10 books on economics and political economy, including Weather the Storms: Taiwan, Its Neighbors and the Asian Financial Crisis; Taiwan in the global economy; Taiwan’s Modernization in Global Perspective; China’s economy after Deng; Economic Integration, Democracy and National Security in East Asia; The ‘One China’ Dilemma; National Identity and Economic Interest; Economic Integration Across the Taiwan Strait; and U.S. Pivotal to Asia and Cross Strait Relations: Economic and Security Dynamics. His book Mega Regionalism and the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement is forthcoming.

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Peter Chow

Catherine Thomas