Living in Taiwan
Taiwan possesses a population density of 648 people per km as per March 2015. The country features a mountainous landscape, a thriving nightlife, and several hot spring resorts---all of which are sure to entice expats to work in this country.
Along with Hong Kong, South Korea, and Singapore, Taiwan is known to be one of the four Asian Tigers. The country was formerly called Formosa which means “beautiful island” by Portuguese colonists who landed in 1544. In the 17th century, the Dutch East India Company was able to establish a port, and Taiwan grew to develop itself into a trading center. Taiwan and China have a complicated relationship fraught with political tension, as China believes that Taiwan is considered to be a province under the People’s Republic of China. Most Taiwanese people see their country as independent and separate from China, although the country does have a long history of cultural traditions with China.
Taiwan is a world leader in the manufacturing of consumer electronics and is where many well-known brands such as Acer, Asus, HTC, Luxgen, and Gigabyte are developed. Some of the main job industries in Taiwan include the chemical industry, metallurgy, plastic and petrochemical industries. The agricultural industry in the country is a small but thriving one as well. The currency used in Taiwan is the New Taiwan dollar, referred to as TWD and locally as NTD. Coins come in quantities of TWD0.50, 1, 5, 10, 20 and TWD50 while banknotes come in quantities of TWD100, TWD200, TWD500, TWD1000 and TWD2000. The cost of living in Taiwan is cheaper than China.
Foreigners who wish to work in Taiwan will need to obtain a work permit application issued by a Taiwanese employer. Expats from the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand can live in the country for up to 30 days without a visa, but a return ticket must be presented first. It is important to note that all required documents are notarized by a Taiwan consulate or embassy. Applications can also be made through embassies and consulates from the People’s Republic of China, as Taiwan is rarely internationally recognized in most countries overseas.
When it comes to religion, five religions make up most of the Taiwanese population. These are Taoism, Confucianism, Protestantism, Buddism and Roman Catholicism. Over 95% of the population in Taiwan is made up of Han Chinese while other ethnic groups include mainland Chinese (14%) and indigenous peoples (2%). Mandarin is the official national language of the country and is also the primary language of instruction in schools and government buildings.
For a small island nation located in East Asia, Taiwan has plenty to offer expatriates. With a low crime rate and affordable living costs, it’s easy to see why the country remains to be a popular expat destination.