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Number of foreign spouses of Taiwanese down over 5 years

TAIPEI--The number of foreign spouses of Taiwanese nationals has decreased annually over the past five years, with the decrease especially obvious for Vietnamese spouses, according to Ministry of the Interior data.

Statistics on foreigners in Taiwan as of the end of 2012 show that the number increased by 44,000 from the end of 2011, mainly because of an increase in the number of foreign laborers.

The statistics show that Vietnamese spouses accounted for 43.2 percent of the foreign spouses in Taiwan as of the end of 2012, followed by Thais at 13.6 percent. Compared with 2011, the number of Vietnamese spouses was down by 3,000.

Over the five-year period, the ratio of Vietnamese spouses has dropped sharply, while the ratio of spouses of other nationalities has increased slightly, according to the statistics.

The ministry said that at the end of 2007, the ratio of Vietnamese spouses was as high as 59.24 percent, but at the end of 2012, the ratio was cut by 16 percentage points.

According to the National Immigration Agency, this shows that the ratio of foreign spouses has reached saturation point.

In fact, however, the ratio of Chinese spouses of Taiwanese nationals is far higher than any other foreigners, but Chinese spouses are not included in the same statistics.

In terms of foreign laborers, the ministry said the ratio of Indonesian workers was the highest at 42.9 percent, followed by Vietnamese laborers at 22. 5 percent and workers from the Philippines at 19.5 percent.

Over the past five years, the number of Indonesian workers has increased by 10.6 percentage points, while the number of Filipinos and Vietnamese has decreased year-on-year.

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