Taiwan Stimulus Vouchers and Relief Packages Discussion


Therefore I am fighting for rights NOW while I have almost 40 years left to retirement. I will NOT sit down and let our rights be trampled with.

This means ending the xenophobia and the unnecessary restrictions we face.


The naysaying in this thread about asking for fairness and rights is interesting to me.

One thing that should be clear to long-term residents is how much things can change in Taiwan when people ask for it and push for it. We’d still be living under a dictatorship if people didn’t push for change! I could give a thousand other examples of how Taiwanese and foreigners have made their case and got things changed. There is no timeless unchanging Taiwan—it’s a work in progress, even if some posters don’t seem to understand this point.



The entitlement in this thread is wild.

On principle alone, I don’t see why any country has the obligation to give special treatment to non-citizens. And anyway, with the paltry amounts of “stimulus” they’re talking about, who even cares? It’s just political noise. Is 10K really worth fussing about?

And furthermore, I can’t really think of anything where I’ve been excluded for being an ARC holder and now APRC holder, aside from voting. Pay the same tax. Use the same NHI. I have bank accounts. Investment accounts. The self-pay vaccine registration was open to ARC holders. ARC renewal costs pennies. An APRC costs 10K. I just don’t see any widespread discrimination or effort to harm foreigners.

Go try being a Taiwanese immigrant, or even just a student, in Europe or the UK. Minimum salary requirements for your visa. Don’t have a job? Bye-bye. Constant visits to embassies. Each visa renewal, even as a student, costs £800. Need to show evidence of finances etc.

Furthermore, every wealthy country likes to bring in two types of immigrant: skilled immigrants to fill gaps, and workers from poorer countries to do manual labour. There’s nothing really wrong with that IMO. Taiwan actually has quite a sensible system for the imported workers too, limiting their time etc.


Classic whataboutism.
Doesn’t matter what other countries do, we pay tax, we are legal residents, we should be entitled to what everyone else gets. How other countries discriminate doesn’t affect me; from the sounds of it they need to fix their system too. The amount of the stimulus matters not either, it’s the principle.


I just wanted to add a note to say that this post of mine is somehow now listed as “12 days ago”—but in fact it was posted in (another?) thread in November 2020 and does not concern discussions of relief packages in June 2021.


It’s not about entitlement. It’s about human dignity. It’s about the ability for humans to move up the ladder of life. Countries that unnecessarily restrict social mobility are shooting themselves in the foot because they only waste the talents of those people. Where do we draw the line? We pay the taxes for a reason, to pool our money for efficient use of government services. What does Taiwan have to gain by throwing a subset of taxpayers to the kerb? Would it be acceptable to deny use of the roads to foreigners as well? Where do we draw the line?

Maybe you haven’t, but many of us have experienced massive roadblocks to success. Many of us have documented our experiences. Some have an advantage of having a wife. I don’t want to marry. Especially for that reason. I don’t want special treatment, I want equal and dignified treatment.

These are valid points but it’s a terrible argument. The EU and the UK do this at their own expense if they fail to consider the human. People having it worse in some areas does not justify mistreatment. The UK has nothing to gain from suppression.

Or as they say to kids, two wrongs don’t make it right.

At the very least, being in the UK, Canada, US, Australia, most EU countries, I can attain nationality fairly and unshackle myself for the rest of my life. Here, they continue to place obstacles.

There’s plenty wrong with it when such a system suppresses people’s ability to climb the social ladder. That’s oppression.

Taiwan’s is particularly egregious and it does nothing but waste talent that could otherwise be contributing more to the country in tax revenue and economic productivity. Taiwan and many countries shoot themselves in the foot due to this, especially as many of those countries are super-aged and are going to be losing those people in the economy very soon.

There is nothing correct about a society that forces suppression on people for their entire lives.


How long have you lived in Taiwan and how many dealings have you had with the banks in particular ?

Before I’m arsed copying and pasting from my other financial threads that will describe the many issues. Foreigners are explicitly shut out from preferential rate loans. I’ve been refused preferential credit cards at my bank because I’m a foreigner . I have to use the older card with less discounts. No clear reason given … Just a few examples. I have many more.

Also foreigners don’t pay the same tax as locals because locals can get big rebates on their tax through their household registration dependents (I can avail of that only because I’m married here and I claim for 8 people. Not one person. Funnily enough I am just a byline on that household registration but I pay all the tax :sunglasses:).

Now you are welcome to go apply for a personal loan and tell us your experience. I have a whole thread in that one.


There are huge issues with digital access to services as well caused by the goddamn ID system.


If they’re a lurker you wouldn’t know that they’re reading a thread.

How do you communication this to voters and society at large in a way that will effectively change first attitudes and then laws?
Or, how do you convince the public that equitable treatment of foreign residents would be beneficial to them in a way that would outweigh any loss, whether real or imagined?
How will you correct for the effect that fighting for rights NOW has typically had on increasing xenophobia?

It often is, but to your point, I agree in the main. I’ve never been told I can’t open a bank account (I’ve opened at least 4, but who remembers?) or that I can’t do very much else because I’m a foreigner. I can’t buy crypto on MaiCoin because of American laws, and I was turned down for a credit card (but I don’t make that much money). I wasn’t going to get the stimulus vouchers, though I qualified just in time, but when I thought I wasn’t it was more an “aww” feeling than a “time to fight!” feeling. The restaurant bans at the start of covid were a clear sign of xenophobia and I thought more of a spotlight should have been on that, but everything was upside down at that time. I know bad things have happened to people, largely through personal malevolence or ignorance. I think if things were really bad for most of us who come here, to Forumosa, we’d have advocacy groups like migrant workers do. The only ones who have ever bothered to speak for us, in my memory, has been AIT once or twice and a couple of chambers of commerce, and maybe @Marco has whispered in a few ears. If something needs to be done, get organized. Otherwise, we’re just grumbling.


The chambers of commerce are always pushing for improvements but the government couldn’t be much bothered with a lot of it . There are few resident foreigners in Taiwan except for spouses from SEA (93% plus- yes 93% of foreigners in Taiwan are female and from just four countries or so ,most ly from Vietnam ,and they mostly naturalise by giving up and then reclaiming their passports).

So they don’t need to advocate much because they become citizens in this way. The Chinese wives association is the most powerful but again they can get ID and vote and have fluent Chinese so…

Don’t hate on foreigners for hating on discrimination .
The latest ID number ‘upgrade’ is an example of how foreigners are deliberately shunted aside. This also isn’t a small thing but a constant nuisance and annoyance and sometimes a complete roadblock as digital services become the standard.

I don’t think foreigners being deliberately excluded from subsidies and benefits is a small deal, I think it is a big deal ! The last stimulus they excluded about 900k people , taxpayers , workers this way. How is that a small deal ?


You don’t need household registration to claim for dependents, I have 6 dependents on mine, none of them Taiwanese and 4 of them not even in Taiwan.

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TW’s attitude is decidedly “mei ban fa” though. IMO it’s obvious the people in power don’t care about foreign talent. TW is doing just fine by their account because they’re doing just fine as individuals.

Few countries treat resident foreigners like (first class) citizens but even so, there are countries where the significant opportunities for foreigners make up for any BS foreigners are put through. TW is not one of those countries.

Actually, the opportunities for most Taiwanese are limited too. Which explains why so many want to leave TW if given the chance.


Fair enough. Although single foreigners then get a bit of a rough time still. Because they can’t put their claim in with their parents and family here.

Funnily enough, I’ve always felt like I was treated like a first-class resident (not citizen). There have been problems, but the problems people make a fuss about are comparable to flying first class and the champagne is warm. I grew up waking up to the smell of chicken poop every morning. There’s not much downhill from there. Maybe others grew up with different expectations of what constitutes fair and equal treatment. I think when you choose to live somewhere, you choose to live with all the opportunities it does and does not give you.


No. What a crap philosophy . Never improve or complain about anything. Know your place.

Access to finance and subsidies and benefits and government training courses and employment opportunities is a big deal not a small one !

Access to digital services is also becoming a huge inconvenience for many.

And that’s just for us fortunate white collars…What the blue collar immigrants have to put up with is shameful .


Everyone accepts basic “discrimination” if you want to call it that. The point about every country having discrimination for citizens vs non- is understood. Sure.

But other countries have a clear path to getting equal benefits - not so in Taiwan.

But why does Taiwan like to make it harder in petty matters? If a country having a per capita income of US $30000 can’t afford to give out NT3000 handouts to all legal tax paying residents, what do you think that speaks about itself?
Do you think it’s wise or petty to discriminate over NT100 or 200 for entry in national parks, museums, etc.

Just because Taiwan is doing well today with existing policies doesn’t mean it’ll continue to do so.

In the coming decades, China, India, Vietnam, Indonesia, Mexico will kick their butt in IT healthcare, finance, entrepreneurship. Taiwan’s inwards looking attitude won’t help forever. It’s never going to become a hub of any kind - tourism, financial, retirement.

Tomorrow when China or another place perfects making chips, the Xinzhu advantage will be lost as well. If Taiwan hadn’t been welcoming for talent, do you think the talent is gonna stay? It’s Taiwan that will suffer in the long run.

The immigration policy has definitely improved over the years with special permits, gold card etc. but there is this undercurrent of Han-blood vs others in day to day life which is annoying. That kind of discrimination is really unnecessary. How would a Taiwanese feel if the USCIS were to tell him that you can’t apply for “full” citizenship since you’re not of American blood? Or being told everyday how you have to contribute to the economy but are ineligible for 401K, other benefits.


I think the real undercurrent is Hokkein (Haklo) Taiwanese vs all others, but in the current situation, it’s citizens vs non-citizens. Citizens of Taiwan include many foreign spouses and their children as well as others who qualify. I think the best thing Taiwan could do would be to have an easier path to citizenship, in particular the restrictions on holding multiple passports for most foreigners.

Of course they can, I put in my parents and a brother in university when I was single, none of them lived in Taiwan.

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Brother in university…Ok…It seems I wasn’t so smart with my tax returns back then or at least the tax officials never told me I could do that. I think folks from some countries have some issues putting in the claim for relatives overseas but for me I’ve worked it out pretty well.
I forgot the main problem is the 20%’ rate a lot of places take off foreigners pay , perfectly legally, and then they have to claim it back. That’s the most difficult one I guess for foreigners deal with.

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The 18% for the first 183 days of the year? Could make things tough for some people starting out in lower paid jobs alright. The opposite is true for higher earners in categories of foreign professionals Taiwan wants to attract who can get lower tax rates than locals and long term residents for 3 years under the gold card scheme.