chapter  7
27 Pages

Universal Values Versus Political Ideology: The Virtual Reform Experience of Taiwan’s National Pension Plan

WithHsiao-hung Nancy Chen

This chapter illustrates the underlying significance of the various national pension plans proposed in Taiwan under the governments led by the Kuomintang (KMT) and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP). Income redistribution, financial viability, economic efficiency, social equity, and the other driving concepts in the welfare reforms vigorously promoted by advanced Western countries had long become the accepted yardstick and commonly accepted values for planning pension systems. Globalization offered a chance of restoring reason to the welfare debate, and the hope that the pensions issue would soon be disentangled from purely political considerations. In comparison with the reforms made by Western countries, the experience in Taiwan can only be considered as 'virtual reform'. The government even proposed to put a stop to those veterans' elderly allowances should they move to Mainland China after retirement, mainly for ideological considerations.