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Economic Daily News: New mindset needed to ease Taiwan's talent crisis
Central News Agency
2013-12-09 12:28 PM
Premier Jiang Yi-huah recently asked the relevant Cabinet agencies to take substantive action within a month to address Taiwan's talent crisis. In fact, the government has presented various plans and measures in recent years to try to solve the problem, only to find that the crisis has worsened. The government needs to change its mindset and reconsider the issue so as to find the right remedy. According to the National Science Council, over the past decade, Taiwan's labor market has experienced a net annual outflow of 10,000 to 20,000 people, mainly skilled workers. Another report released in late 2012 by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development indicated that 61.1 percent of the emigrants from Taiwan were higher educated individuals. Although the exodus of highly skilled people is an ongoing problem, most of the policies adopted by the government focus on mid- and long-term or trivial issues. No wonder the problem has been deteriorating year after year. Taiwan's failure to retain talent is fundamentally linked to the country's slow economy, high unemployment and stagnant wages. We need to identify the real causes of the problem in order to find a solution. Another issue involves the talent gap. As Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Chairman Morris Chang pointed out recently, the business sector needs more employees with innovative skills but this does not necessarily mean more doctorate degree holders. Instead, he said, Taiwan requires more people trained at technical vocational education institutions. Although there is high level of consensus in Taiwan on strengthening technical vocational education, the government has invested only a few hundred million Taiwan dollars in such efforts over the past several years. By comparison, the government has poured NT$50 billion over five years into funding research projects by top universities. If the government can think clearly about the long-term problem and change its approach to handling it, Taiwan's talent crisis may ease gradually. (Editorial abstract -- Dec. 9, 2013) (By Y.F. Low)
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