TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The number of Hongkongers obtaining Taiwanese residence permits surpassed 10,000 in 2020, doubling from the previous year amid tightening repression in the Chinese territory, reports said Wednesday (Feb. 24).
Data from the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) shows that the sharpest surge since the department started collecting figures on the trend, though migration from Macau barely budged, the China Times reported.
From 2016 to 2018, the number of Hongkongers acquiring residence permits in Taiwan remained largely stable at just above 4,000. The first significant increase occurred in 2019, when the number reached 5,858.
The trend accelerated in 2020, when the number of residence permit holders surged by 84.6 percent to reach 10,813. Related figures for Macau showed the total staying just above 1,000 before reaching 1,474 in 2019 and rising by 6.9 percent to 1,576 last year, the MAC said.
Migrants from Hong Kong were attracted by Taiwan’s freer society and by the cultural similarities, the China Times reported, but real estate experts have pointed out that some visa regulations might have been misunderstood. Investment migration requires a minimum of NT$6 million (US$215,000), but the funds should be used to set up a company that would eventually pay taxes, not for investing or speculating in real estate.