Taiwan - Market Overview Taiwan - Market Overview
With a population of 23 million, Taiwan is a thriving democracy, a vibrant market economy, and a highly attractive export market, especially for U.S. firms. In 2016, Taiwan was ranked as the United States’ 10th-largest trading partner in goods, placing it ahead of markets such as Italy and Brazil. It was also the 14th-largest U.S. export market overall, and, in 2016, was the seventh largest source of foreign students pursuing higher education in the United States.
In 2016, according to the U.S. Census, exports to Taiwan increased 0.7% to US$ 26.04 billion. Imports from Taiwan decreased 3.8% to US$ 39.31 billion. Taiwan ran a trade surplus with the United States of US$ 13.26 billion dollars in 2016, a decrease of US$ 1.77 billion over the prior year.
Mainland China is Taiwan’s largest trading partner, accounting for 23.07% of total trade and 19.07% of Taiwan’s imports in 2016. The United States is Taiwan's second largest trading partner, accounting for 12.15% of total trade. Following the U.S. in terms of overall trade are Japan (11.77%), Hong Kong (7.77%), and South Korea (5.37%).
Taiwan was the world’s sixth-largest holder of foreign exchange reserves and gold as of December 2016, with holdings of US$ 456.9 billion. In 2016, Taiwan’s economy had a growth rate of 1.92% and a GDP growth rate of 5.7% compared to 2015. As of February 2017, Taiwan’s unemployment is 3.85% and the labor participation rate is 58.75%.