Not only does this benefit them as a port destination, but the influx of trade goes through Taiwan with the majority of manufactured goods of the Pacific region flowing through their ports. Since Taiwan has a favorable relationship with the Western states, it has been able to absorb the growth of the East Asian region and serve as an effective broker for traffic of goods. Thus it plays a central role within the region as a broker between lesser developed nations and the developed super powers.
Not only does Taiwan hold an enviable position within global trade, but it also has developed its internal capacity to become a manufacturing force. Taiwan has focused its industries on two key developments, high end technology products including semi-conductors and high end technology product development. The Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company is the world's largest independent semiconductor foundry. As a joint venture through subsidized state funding, TSMC is one of the most powerful and technology oriented semiconductor companies in the world. Advances within Taiwan technology innovation have pushed its capacity beyond their limits of population and workforce. As a result of their high end production and strategic supply chain advantage. Taiwan is able to attract market capitalization from ATI, Broadcom, Conexant, Marvell, and NVIDIA among other very prominent transnational powerhouses. The estimated market capitalization of Taiwan's semiconductor industry is over 82 billion dollars. In addition to their astounding growth within the semiconductor business, Taiwan has been able to nurture an environment of high technology growth within software and hardware manufacturing. They are Apple's principle chip manufacturer for the past decade as well as part of IBM's network of dealers.
The combination of high investment in education as well as their position as a global and regional resource within global supply chains as allowed them to cultivate a very well trained workforce focused on developing high end manufacturing products and focused on innovation. One of the reasons that Taiwan has succeeded as a global player despite the wavering of other East Asian regional player is their ability to innovate and the strong entrepreneurial roots within the nation. One of the principle characteristics of its business development and industrial sector is their "daring entrepreneurship." Over fifteen percent of Taiwan's overall resources are based within startups. Through its unique high end skill level and systematic human resources and risk takers, Taiwan has emerged as a global force throughout the industry.
Finally, Taiwan's location as a primary port nation for the East Asian region has allowed them to become a manufacturing integration center. They are at the nexus of American research and development, Hong Kong commerce, and Chinese raw manufacturing. By connecting all three levels of these facilities they have been able to quickly integrate themselves to become an integral part of the development process. This has culminated in their ability to quickly expand beyond focal points and work within high margin industries rather than focus purely on manufacturing output.
There are significant opportunities for Taiwan within the new world of globalization. However, along with these opportunities come significant risks that have caused the Asian sector in general to destabilize. Taiwan has excellent relationships with the international community, as part of the WTO they have legitimized their legal system much more than most East Asian players to become one of the most friendly atmospheres for foreign investment. Thus, they become an ideal opportunity for cooperation with foreign investors towards greater foreign direct investment within their economy and provide an access point to the Asian market. Protecting Taiwan's positioning within the globalize world has become reliant upon laws and policies that makes Taiwan part of the global supply chain. As part of the huge investment in worldwide commerce, and its positioning in the Pacific, Taiwan has already built a vast network within manufacturing and supply chain distribution. They have enacted numerous laws that protect their relationships by providing built in advantages for favored Western relationships. Taiwan for instance provides tax exemption for high technology transnational that choose to build manufacturing operations within the Taiwan mainland. They similarly offer very generous compensation to returning nationals pursuing entrepreneurship. The Taiwan government ranks fifth in the world in overall expenditure on start-up funding. They have built numerous billion dollar incubator efforts throughout Taiwan and focused on Taipei to increase the level of innovation and entrepreneurship on the mainland. These investments have yielded significant benefits for their economy as they are carefully pursuing strategies for growth and expansion into various high technology areas. In addition to their current protective measures, the Taiwanese government has created increasingly complex financial safeguards to protect wealth management and investiture within key industries. Transparency in the federal banking system as well as decentralization and market utility for foreign banks has helped Taiwan expand their current financial infrastructure.
The entrance of Taiwan to the WTO has not only influenced Taiwan economically and politically, but also in their cultural edifices. Taiwan has changed its approach to immigration as well as transnational business by allowing for greater equality of access to their domestic markets. As a result, there is an influx of immigration to Taiwan not only from mainland China, but throughout the East Asian region. This has helped to create diversity within their culture as well as create new economic classes. In the short-term this has provided dramatic change and problems for the government has it believes that unemployment increases of four percent over the past two years can be attributed to growing immigration. However, in the long-term, it will serve to strengthen their economy through a diversification of resources, labor and intellect. At the same time, Taiwan has increased government grants and scholarships for travel study abroad for Taiwan nationals in the hope of developing high caliber talent that will speed its high technology development. Since 2004, Taiwan has increased its dedicated budget for higher education by 20%, with the majority of this money going towards the development of technical colleges focused on computer engineering. They similarly have devoted resources to the development of logistics and the distribution business, HR training, healthcare, communications among myriad of other innovations. Their concessions to the WTO also have involved creating a new environment for cultural and economic growth. The Taiwanese government has agreed to assist the agricultural industry in upgrading their current technology and general operations by improving the distributions infrastructure within Taiwan. Thus adding to an increasing level of environmental protection, recreation and tourism.
However, globalization has not meant unmitigated success for the Taiwanese community and economic status. It has caused severe social, cultural, economic and political turmoil. First, the entrance of transnational players as part of WTO's preferred trading program has allowed major transnational such as Wal-Mart to enter into the Taiwanese marketplace. Although it is still too early to see if this will have a clear impact on the future of Taiwan's small business development, already such global players have invested billions of dollars to absorb major burgeoning industries within Taiwan. This is a major concern going forward is the possibility of usurpation of market share from internal industries and the growing reliance upon foreign players. Taiwan has to carefully watch its domestic industries to ensure that they are not completely subsumed by growing transnational market pushes. At the same time, the influence of aggressive foreign investment has led to pressures to change the Taiwanese government. Taiwan is heralded by many western powers as the ideal example of a working democracy within East Asian culture. However, the reality is that the state still exerts significant influence on industrial, cultural and social disciplines. Foreign players are pushing for Taiwan to continue their privatization and to create a market economy to allow for complete foreign access. Much of the major political changes within Taiwan have been part of bargaining agreements with foreign superpowers, especially the United States. The complete reliance of Taiwan upon U.S. military protection has made them vulnerable to power plays by the U.S. government. Thus, it has made major concessions within areas of trade and political reform in favor of the United States.
In the midst of the growing economic and political power of Taiwan in world affairs is the duality of its nationalist sentiment. Nationalism is a very strong ideal of the Taiwanese populace, not only because of their status as elite of the East Asian region, but also the political history and embittered past defeats at the hand of the communist regime of Mainland China.
Nationalism at the general level can be understood as a devotion to one's nation and the interest of that nation over all others. This is much more a political doctrine and a philosophy than any individual stance.
It is the understanding that as a nation, each individual must hold it sovereign and respect its autonomy. Nationalism can be understood in the context of national pride and a sense of identity gained through independence. Nationality therefore is recognized as…