Outgoing Taiwanese president to visit contested island

  • The outgoing president of Taiwan, Ma Ying-jeou, plans to visit the Itu Aba island on Thursday. +
  • Itu Aba, also known as Taiping, is part of the Spratly Islands and is one of a number of contested islands in the South China Sea. 

  • The trip is dependent on weather conditions being good in the area.

  • China has been developing a number of airstrips on artificial islands in the South China Sea, significantly escalating tensions in the region. 

  • Last week, a report commissioned by the U.S department of defence warned that if the current state of affairs continues, the South China Sea would effectively be a 'Chinese lake' by 2030.

  • President Ma met with his Chinese counterpart, President Xi, in November last year - the first meeting between the leaders of China and Taiwan. 

  • Tsai Ing-wen, Taiwan's president elect from the less 'China friendly' Democratic Progressive Party, does not take office until May and is not sending a representative on the trip. 


Taiwan elects first female president

  • The Democratic Progressive Party's Tsai Ing-wen will replace Ma Ying-jeou of the Nationalists (KMT) as president of Taiwan - Mr. Ma was ineligible to run for a third term
  • Ms. Tsai secured a comfortable victory over Eric Chu of the KMT in Saturday's election. 

  • The DPP also won a majority in Taiwan's 113 seats parliament for the first time. 

  • KMT favours closer ties with China - President Ma met with President Xi in November - while the DPP is considered more 'China hostile', though it has moved closer to the centre ground in recent years and Ms. Tsai has said she is in favour of maintaining the status quo in terms of China-Taiwan relations.

Presidential 

taiwan election result 2015

Legislative


Taiwan set for January 16th election

 
  • Tsai Ing-wen, leader of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party, topped the final poll ahead of national elections due to be held a week on Saturday. 

  • The DPP have been leading in opinion polls for months and Ms. Tsai is widely expected to replace Ma Ying-jeou of the ruling Nationalists (KMT) as president - Mr. Ma is in eligible to run for a third term

  • Eric Chu, the party's chairman, is running as KMT's presidential candidate. 

  • KMT favours closer ties with China - President Ma met with President Xi in November - while the DPP is considered more 'China hostile', though it has moved closer to the centre ground in recent years and Ms. Tsai has said she is in favour of maintaining the status quo in terms of China-Taiwan relations. 

  • In addition to the presidential election, Taiwan will also hold legislative elections on January 16th.