Sheu Yu-jer: Cautious start in a storm

Taiwan's new finance minister faces political and economic storms as the island reduces its dependence on China. He's reacted cautiously ... but perhaps too cautiously.

One of the biggest challenges facing Taiwanese finance minister Sheu Yu-jer last year was balancing public expectations of lower taxes with the risk of trade shocks, in particular those caused by heightened tensions between China and the US its two biggest trading partners.

As a technology manufacturing powerhouse, Taiwan is heavily dependent on some of the biggest American technology companies, such as Apple and Google. As such, US President Donald Trump’s vow to bring manufacturing jobs back onshore has perhaps become the biggest risk to the tech-heavy economy.

Sheu has been extremely cautious about public spending against this backdrop. Perhaps too cautious. That's why he ranks only...

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