Taiwan after the 2020 Election: Post-election Scenarios
21 Jan 2020 08:30 - 12:30
Source: Holding the ROC flags and cartoon portraits of President Tsai, expatriates in Houston give President Tsai an enthusiastic welcome, 總統府 Taiwan Presidential Office / Flickr

This International Expert Discussion and Conference is organized by the European Institute for Asian Studies. Maaike Okano-Heijmans, Senior Research Fellow and Asia expert will be a speaker at this event. For registration, RSVP here

On 11 January 2020 Taiwan will hold its fifteenth Presidential election and its tenth Parliamentary election. It is the seventh time people can directly elect a President. The three main candidates in the running are current President Tsai Ing-Wen for the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP); Han Kuo-yu - the present Kaohsiung Mayor - for the Kuomintang (KMT); and James Soong of the People First Party (PFP). While the DPP and the KMT are still dominated by the pro-unification versus pro-independence debate, new contesters are emerging, shaking the political landscape. Contesting for re-election, current DPP President Tsai Ing-Wen is a pro-Washington candidate, attracting popular consent for her status-quo position. Yet, less successful domestic policies have caused her popularity to decline. KMT candidate Han Kuo-yu is an anti-elite politician with pro-Beijing leanings. While benefiting from Tsai’s declining popularity among the electorate, he will need to broaden his base significantly in order to win, especially with James Soong challenging him. With the economy slowing down and relations with Mainland China at their worst for decades, many (young) voters are dissatisfied with the old established elite and may seek appealing alternatives, particularly in the Parliamentary elections.
With Taiwan citizens invited to express their preference at the ballot box in only a couple of days, the European Institute for Asian Studies (EIAS) cordially invites you to an International Expert Discussion and Conference on the outcomes of Taiwan’s elections on 21 January 2020. The event will provide an analysis of the election results and shed light on their significance for the island’s domestic political landscape and regional approach.


I-Chung Lai, President, Prospect Foundation

Christopher Hughes, Professor of International Relations, London School of Economics and Political Science

Gudrun Wacker, Senior Fellow, Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP)

Julie Yu-Wen Chen, Professor of Chinese Studies, University of Helsinki

Philip Saunder, Distinguished Research Fellow and Director of Studies, Center for the Studies of Chinese Military Affairs, Institute for National Strategic Studies, National Defense University

Maaike Okano-Heijmans, Senior Research Fellow, Clingendael Institute


8:30 Registration

9:00 Welcoming Remarks by Dr Harry TSENG, Taipei Representative to the EU and Belgium                

9:15 Session I: The Taiwan Elections Results under the loop

10:45  Coffee Break

11:00 Session II: Regional Balances in East Asia after the 2020 Taiwan Elections

12:30 Networking Lunch

Sign up now

Registration is necessary. Please register here.

Also read Maaike Okano-Heijmans' still relevant op-ed from 2015 'EU should tango with Taiwanese tiger and Chinese dragon and listen to her recent appearance on the Dutch radio BNR Nieuwsradio 'will Taiwan become a part of China again'.