Radio Taiwan Internartional
Taipei’s mayor, Ko Wen-je, has touted the benefits for new immigrants to Taiwan of learning the local
language. Ko was speaking Friday as he spoke with new citizens who have been taking classes in the Minnan variant of Hokkien, also known as Hoklo or, simply, Taiwanese.
Ko said Taipei now has hundreds of classes aimed at helping new Taiwanese citizens settle in the country. He said there are now 500,000 naturalized citizens in the country, some 350,000 of them based in Taipei. Over 90% of these are mainland Chinese spouses of Taiwanese partners, with others coming from countries in Southeast Asia.
While Mandarin Chinese is the official language in Taiwan, Taiwanese is widely spoken colloquially and especially outside of the capital Taipei. Ko said learning Taiwanese has a number of benefits for new arrivals seeking to assimilate. [FULL STORY]