Recently, low birth rates and an aging society in Taiwan have resulted in a drastic reduction in the workforce. In response, in December 2015, the Executive Yuan decided to loosen the restrictions on foreigners who intend to work in Taiwan.
Currently, foreigners who intend to work in Taiwan must meet several requirements, including requirements regarding minimum wages and higher education. Companies offering professional positions in general must also meet the minimum capital requirement. These rigid conditions have caused difficulties for foreigners and in turn have reduced their willingness to work in Taiwan.
The proposed changes replace the current rigid requirements with a flexible "point system," where foreigners can apply for a work visa in Taiwan based on the number of points that they earn. Foreigners earn points by proving their expertise and bilingual ability, while companies in Taiwan will be able to hire these foreigners without meeting minimum capital requirements after the changes are implemented. These changes are in line with similar changes in other modern Asian countries such as Japan, South Korea, and Singapore.
The Executive Yuan expects to implement the changes shortly. A part of the proposed change requires an amendment to the respective labor laws by the Legislative Yuan, which is expected to be reviewed and voted on before the end of 2016.