Date: 24 Sep 2018
By: South China Morning Post
Taiwan, battling a severe brain drain to the mainland, plans to offer citizenship to students and skilled workers from Southeast Asian nations under proposed legislation that will head to the self-ruled island’s lawmakers for review and a vote next month.
The economic immigration bill is Taipei’s response to Beijing’s initiatives that have lured talent away from Taiwan, which China’s leadership sees as a wayward province to be brought back into the fold — if necessary, by force.
It would target Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, Myanmar and other Asean member countries. If approved, the bill could take effect early next year.
Besides allowing Taipei to address the problem of a growing number of Taiwanese professionals surrendering to the lure of mainland jobs and other incentives, the bill is seen as a way for Taiwan to tackle the dilemma of a declining working-age population, officials and analysts said.