TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — After a preliminary reading, the Legislative Yuan on Monday (May 10) approved a proposed amendment to an act that aims to lower requirements for foreign white-collar professionals to work in Taiwan.
Devised by the National Development Council (NDC), the draft amendment of the Act for the Recruitment and Employment of Foreign Professionals (外國專業人才延攬及僱用法) seeks to attract more foreign talent to the country to ease labor shortages in the key areas of science, economics, culture, and education. It will allow foreign professionals to enjoy extended tax deductions and health insurance coverage and make it easier for them to become permanent Taiwan residents.
The bill will also relax requirements for foreign teachers in response to Taiwan's plan to become a Chinese-English bilingual nation by 2030. In addition, fresh graduates from the world's top 500 universities will be eligible to seek a job in Taiwan without the current criterion of two years' work experience.
While the legislation would likely help retain more foreign white-collar professionals, it fails to address blue-collar workers who are in high demand. Legislator Ann Kao (高虹安) of the Taiwan People's Party warned that the country would become merely a "training center" for skilled foreign blue-collar workers if it continues to limit their employment period.
In response, NDC Minister Kung Ming-hsin (龔明鑫) agreed that keeping blue-collar talent in Taiwan is very important to industries. Although the topic was not covered in the draft amendment, the council is in talks with Vice Premier Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) and economics experts to deal with it separately, he explained.
For more information about the Act for the Recruitment and Employment of Foreign Professionals, visit this website.