Taiwan continues to be ranked ‘free’ in Freedom House report

Taiwan retained its status as a "free" country in the latest edition of the "Freedom in the World" report published Thursday.

The nation scored 94 points out of 100 in the 2023 report, which was compiled by the United States-based Freedom House. Taiwan ranked second in Asia, only behind Japan.

Specifically, Taiwan received 38 points out of 40 for political rights and 56 out of 60 for civil liberties, which was identical to last year.

The report indicated that Taiwan retained its position as a highly free country due to a number of perfect scores. Exceptions included questions such as "Is there freedom for trade unions and similar professional or labor organizations?" and "Are safeguards against official corruption strong and effective?" for which Taiwan scored 3 points out of 4.

The report credited Taiwan as having fortified its freedom since the 1990s, after ending martial law in 1987 and holding its first direct presidential election in 1996, followed by "full multiparty legislative elections."

Although the report went on to praise Taiwan for having a well rounded democracy that safeguards the liberties of its citizens, it also raised concerns such as exploitation of migrant workers and China's attempts to infiltrate Taiwan's democracy and media.

The report also highlighted notable events in 2022, such as the visit of then U.S. House of Representatives speaker Nancy Pelosi, the failed referendum to lower the voting age to 18 and the victory of the opposition Kuomintang in the November 2022 local elections, as examples of how Taiwan's freedom is strongly correlated to its democracy.

Meanwhile, China continued to be rated as "not free" in the report with a score of 9 points, the same as in 2022, receiving -2 points out of 40 for political rights and 11 out of 60 for civil liberties.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel