The Implications of Taiwan's Declining Defense

Andrew T H Tan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Taiwan's declining defense capability has increasingly tilted the balance of power in the Taiwan Strait towards China. While the current status quo suits Taiwan's domestic political realities and postpones the Taiwan question to the future, its declining defense capabilities vis-à-vis China hold important implications for Taiwan. They include the reduction of its political bargaining power with China, the undermining of stability in the Taiwan Strait as China increasingly has a viable military option, and ultimately decreases the probability that the status quo can be maintained. Left unattended, Taiwan's declining defense capabilities narrow Taiwan's options and could lead to unpalatable outcomes, including sudden crisis and conflict, and the ultimate resolution of the Taiwan problem on China's terms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-62
Number of pages22
JournalAsia-Pacific Review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


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