China - Taiwan

Chronology from Sep 2022 to Dec 2022

: Song Tao is appointed head of the State Council’s Taiwan Affairs Office, replacing Liu Jieyi. Song served as head of CCP’s International Liaison Department since 2015.

: US authorizes the sale to Taiwan of Volcano (vehicle-launched) antitank mine-laying systems, valued at $180 million.

: President Tsai announces that conscription for all young men born after 2005 will be extended from 4 to 12 months beginning in 2024. This reform will strengthen Taiwan’s reserve and civil defense units.

: Seventy-one Chinese military aircraft and seven Chinese naval vessels conduct maneuvers around Taiwan in the second largest ever single-day Chinese military display of intimidation against Taiwan and US support for Taiwan.

: President Biden signs the FY 2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which includes the Taiwan Enhanced Resilience Act (TERA), which provides $10 billion in grants to Taiwan for purchasing US military equipment. This is then reduced to $2 billion in loans in the Department of Defense appropriation.

: Taiwan’s Cabinet decides to resume the “mini-three links” ferry services between China and Taiwan’s offshore islands of Kinmen and Matsu from Jan. 7 to Feb. 6, 2023. Passengers will be limited to Kinmen and Matsu residents and spouses from mainland China.

: Rhodium Group estimates that a blockade of Taiwan could lead to $2 trillion in global economic losses. The US State Department previously shared Rhodium’s findings with EU officials as Washington and Brussels discuss ramifications of a possible attack on Taiwan, according to Financial Times.

: US State Department Deputy Assistant Secretary Tony Fernandes arrives in Taiwan to participate in third annual US-Taiwan Economic Prosperity Partnership Dialogue (EPPD).

: Kinmen County Magistrate-elect Chen Fu-hai, Lienchiang County Magistrate-elect Wang Chung-ming, and KMT Legislator Jessica Chen visit Chinese officials in Xiamen to discuss Beijing’s recent ban on Taiwan liquor and the future development of “mini-three links” travel.

: China suspends beer, liquor, beverage imports from Taiwan after customs authorities earlier banned Taiwanese seafood imports.

: Global Cooperation and Training Framework (GCTF) has convened seven workshops in 2022, according to a joint statement issued by Taiwan’s MOFA, AIT, and the diplomatic offices of Japan and Australia in Taipei. The GCTF, established in 2015, is a platform for Taiwan to address global challenges and share expertise alongside the US, Japan, Australia, and other likeminded partners.

: Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense reports that AGM-88 high-speed anti-radiation missiles purchased in 2017 and scheduled to be delivered in 2023 have already arrived.

: US and Australia reiterate, at the conclusion of their annual foreign and defense ministerial talks, that they strongly oppose China’s “destabilizing” actions in the region and support upholding peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait. The two describe Taiwan as a leading democracy, an important regional economy, and a key contributor to critical supply chains, adding that they are committed to working together to support Taiwan’s meaningful participation in international organizations.

: US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) announces two arms sales approvals for Taiwan, with a total value of $428 billion, which includes spare parts for the F-16 Fighting Falcon, Indigenous Defense Fighter, and C-130 military transport aircraft. China’s Taiwan Affairs Office warns that the decision “represents conniving and supporting the ‘Taiwan independence’ forces, as well as undermining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.”

: TSMC holds the “tool-in” ceremony for its new plant in Phoenix, Arizona, to produce 4nm chips. President Biden, TSMC founder Morris Chang, and Apple CEO Tim Cook are in attendance. TSMC announces it will build a second plant in Arizona to produce 3nm chips. The expected total investment for the two plants is $40 billion.

: Director of the Hsinchu Science Park in Taiwan announces that the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) will build a plant at the park to produce 1-nanometer (nm) semiconductors.

: Taiwan company Global Wafers, the world’s third-largest silicon wafer manufacturer, breaks ground on a new $5 billion facility in Sherman, Texas, the first silicon wafer factory to be built in the United States in more than 20 years.

: Congressional and other sources claim that weapons deliveries to Taiwan amount to $18.7 billion, up from more than $14 billion a year earlier. Nonetheless, they express concern that the Ukraine conflict has delayed deliveries of 208 Javelin antitank weapons and 215 surface-to-air Stinger missiles, both ordered in 2015.

: Taiwan’s opposition Nationalist (Kuomintang or KMT) Party scores a major victory over President Tsai Ing-wen’s Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in island-wide local elections. These elections mark the unofficial beginning of the presidential election campaign with the election scheduled for January 2024.

: Taiwan’s MOEA bans Chinese-funded companies from operating research and development (R&D) offices in Taiwan, either directly or via a third-party.

: Presidents Biden and Xi Jinping meet ahead of the G20 summit in Indonesia. Biden asserts US opposition to any unilateral change in the status quo between Taiwan and China, and Xi calls the Taiwan question “the core of the core interests of China.”

: United States and Taiwan conclude first round of negotiations under the US-Taiwan Initiative on the 21st-Century Trade Initiative. China’s Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO) Spokesperson Ma Xiaoguang criticizes the negotiations as a step toward Taiwan independence.

: Foreign ministers of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Britain, and the US include Taiwan in their G7 meeting statement, saying they “reaffirm the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and call for the peaceful resolution of cross-Strait issues.”

: US Department of Defense releases its National Defense Strategy, which says (p. 15) “[t]he Department will support Taiwan’s asymmetric self-defense commensurate with the evolving PRC threat and consistent with our one China policy.”

: Secretary of State Blinken says that China has abandoned a decades-old understanding with the US and decided that the cross-Strait status quo is no longer acceptable.

: Taiwan’s Ministry of Economic Affairs approves Taiwanese chipmaker United Microelectronics Corporation to procure 30% of shares in United Semiconductor Xiamen. After the sale, USCXM will become a fully owned subsidiary of UMC.

: Taiwan media outlets report that TSMC has obtained a waiver from new US export controls targeting China’s semiconductor industry. TSMC can continue to import chip manufacturing equipment for its foundry in Nanjing producing 16 nm nodes for 12 months.

: White House releases its National Security Strategy, which says (p. 24) “We oppose any unilateral changes to the status quo from either side, and do not support Taiwan independence. We remain committed to our one China policy … And we will support Taiwan’s self-defense and … maintain our capacity to resist any resort to force or coercion against Taiwan.”

: Taiwan’s Minister of Economic Affairs Wang Mei-hua leads a business delegation to the US for the first in-person meeting of the Technology Trade and Investment Collaboration (TTIC) framework. US and Taiwan companies sign agreements spanning the renewable energy, 5G, and healthcare sectors.

: US Commerce Department imposes sweeping export controls against China’s semiconductor industry, affecting both US chip design firms and Taiwan suppliers using American technology like TSMC.

: Taiwan Premier Su Tseng-chang announces the 2023 defense budget will increase by 12.9% ($1.5 billion) over 2022. Including anticipated special budgets, the 2023 defense budget will be 13.9% ($2.25 billion) more than that of 2022.

: US Assistant Secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel Kritenbrink tells the Institute for Korean-American Studies that the US disputes China’s claim over the Taiwan Strait and opposes any attempt to change the fact that the Taiwan Strait is international waters.

: In Taipei, the US government convenes a preliminary meeting of “Chips 4,” a new working group of the US, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan intended to strengthen semiconductor supply chain resiliency and cooperation.

: Paraguay President Mario Abdo Benítez calls on Taiwan to invest $1 billion in his country to justify diplomatic relations between Asunción and Taipei. Paraguay, a major exporter of soybeans and other agricultural products, remains cut off from the lucrative China market.

: US Secretary of State Antony Blinken meets Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on the margins of the UN General Assembly. Blinken called for cross-Strait peace and stability, while Wang warned the US to stop supporting Taiwan independence.

: Two Chinese military drones, the CH-4 and the WZ-7, are reported to have flown near Taiwan for the first time.

: In response to a question, US President Joseph Biden says “We’re not encouraging their being independent. … that’s their decision.” When asked “Would US forces defend the island?” Biden responds “Yes, if in fact there was an unprecedented attack.”

: China’s Foreign Ministry announces sanctions against the CEOs of Raytheon Technologies and Boeing Defense, Space, and Security in apparent retaliation for the US sale of the two companies’ weapons systems to Taiwan on September 2.

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: US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) announces three arms sales approval for Taiwan with a total value of $1.1 billion. Included are equipment for surveillance radar, Harpoon air-to-ground missiles, and Sidewinder air-to-air missiles.

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