Taiwan is planning to inject around NT $40 billion (US$ 1.3 billion) to help businesses most affected by the COVID-19 outbreak in a move unprecedented on the island to date.
In government reports released late in the week, the ruling party of President Tsai Ing-wen stressed the need to “stabilize financial markets” whilst claiming “the fundamentals of Taiwan’s domestic economy are still good” in a Reuters report issued late Thursday.
Speaking to her National Security Council earlier in the day, this is Tsai’s second large scale stimulus package aimed at shoring up Taiwan’s export reliant economy since the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus earlier in the year.
A similar package to the tune of NT $60 billion (US$ 2 billion) was released late in February, primarily aimed at those most affected by the reduction in foot traffic in shopping districts, and dealings reliant on trade with China, Taiwan’s main trading partner.
At the time, current premier Su Tseng-chang said, in talking about the export-driven economy, and aimed at links with China, that Taiwan “should not put all its eggs in one basket”, although some estimates now have GDP predictions for 2020, losing up to half of one percentage point should the outbreak run through till the end of April.
Taipei on Friday announced its 50th coronavirus case, an American citizen in Taiwan infected by visiting friends, although the nation still ranks very low on the global outbreak scale in comparison to China and several major European nations such as Italy, Spain and France.