Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The role of the state in Taiwan's economy

Economics probably doesn't appeal to you as much as Taiwan's natural wonders and cultural treasures, but I think the following statistics (which I came across in a 1990 book published by Taiwan's government) are interesting.

In 1952, when sugar was Taiwan's no. 1 export and sugar refining was nationalised, the government controlled 52% of the island's industrial production. By 1972 this proportion had fallen to 19%, and by 1988 it was 10%. Of course, the state's declining role in industry isn't due so much to the privatisation of state-owned enterprises (though there has been some, for example Taiwan Salt Co. became Taiyen) as to the massive post-World War II expansion of the manufacturing and petrochemical sectors.

I wonder what the current percentage is?

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