Hsinchu highest salary in Taiwan, Taichung lowest among cities

Hsinchu City and County have the highest salaries, Taipei came in third, and Taichung has the lowest of major cities

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Hsinchu Yinxi Gate

Hsinchu Yinxi Gate (By Wikimedia Commons)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- A Taiwanese netizen took data on the average salaries for all the major counties and cities in Taiwan and found that Hsinchu City had the highest, not Taipei, and Taichung came in last place of the six major municipalities in the country and 13th overall.

A netizen on the popular Taiwanese online forum PTT compared the latest data from the Ministry of Labor on salaries in the counties and major cities of Taiwan came to some interesting conclusions: 

1. The salary for one person in Hsinchu can pay for two in Pingtung

The average salary of NT$53,141 (US$1,756) in Hsinchu City, in northern Taiwan, can almost be used to hire two people in Pingtung County at NT$28,074 per person, in Taiwan's far southeast. The high average salary in Hsinchu is likely due to the large number of high-paid IT professionals working in and around the Hsinchu Science Park, while Pingtung is the least accessible and industrialized part of the island. 

2. Salaries in rural areas are not necessarily lower than urban areas

The average monthly salary of Miaoli County (NT$35,766), which is much less urbanized, is actually higher than the metropolis of New Taipei City (NT$34,739).

3. Salaries in Taoyuan are far higher than in New Taipei City 

Despite the considerably lower cost of living, Taoyuan's average salary of NT$37,278 is substantially higher than the more costly New Taipei City's NT$34,739 average monthly wage. 

4. Taichung's salary came in last place of the six major cities

Of Taiwan's six major municipalities, Taichung came in last place, with an average of NT$30,771, even losing to Lienchiang County (Matsu Islands) at NT$33,518 and Kinmen at NT$31,590.

5. The salaries in Keelung City and Yunlin County are higher than Tainan City and Kaohsiung City

Less densely populated Keelung City (NT$34,178) and Yunlin County (NT$34,217) had higher salaries than the big cities of Kaohsiung (NT$32,210) and Tainan (NT$31,669).

Rank County or City Monthly Average Wage
1 Hsinchu City NT$53,141
2 Hsinchu County NT$44,940
3 Taipei City NT$42,830
4 Taoyuan City NT$37,278
5 Miaoli County NT$35,766
6 New Taipei City NT$34,739
7 Yunlin County NT$34,217
8 Keelung City NT$34,178
9 Lienchiang County NT$33,518
10 Kaohsiung City NT$32,210
11 Tainan City NT$31,669
12 Kinmen County NT$31,590
13 Taichung City NT$30,771
14 Hualien County NT$30,439
15 Nantou County NT$30,146
16 Yilan County NT$30,077
17 Chiayi County NT$29,619
18 Chiayi City NT$29,396
19 Penghu County NT$28,644
20 Taitung County NT$28,566
21 Changhua County NT$28,411
22 Pingtung County NT$28,074

Many netizens made disparaging comments about Taichung's low average monthly pay:

"Taichung is so low."

"Taichung is really tragic."

"Taichung's birth incentives are just attracting zombies (unregistered births)."

"The underground economy in Taichung is not reporting taxable income, if it did Taichung would be number one in Taiwan."

Others pointed out the relatively low rate of pay seen in New Taipei City in comparison to the cost of living there:

"New Taipei City is the most pathetic."

"New Taipei City's low salary combined with its high cost of living makes living for outsiders very hard."

Still others noticed Taipei's drop in the rankings:

"Taipei's salary dropped really fast..., we can see that the salary is dropping faster and faster."

"Living in Taipei City on NT$40,000 and renting an apartment is more miserable than living in central and southern Taiwan on NT$30,000."

"Miserable Ghost Island salary."