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For first time in 100 years, more women than men in Taiwan

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The female population in Taiwan has now exceeded the male population for the first time in 100 years, the Ministry of Interior (MOI) announced yesterday.

According to the MOI, based on statistics collected through the month of November, the male population of Taiwan stood at 11,683,187, while the female population was 11,684,133, meaning there were 946 more women than men.

The MOI said that men have outnumbered women in Taiwan for over 100 years. However, the latest statistics show that the ratio has changed.

Deputy Interior Minister Hsiao Chia-chi (蕭家淇) said that the gap between the male and female population had always been larger compared to the gaps in other countries.

“Except for the traditional idea of patriarchy, there are more factors contributing to the large gap between the male and female populations in Taiwan including large amounts of military staff immigrating into Taiwan in 1949 and adding professional soldiers into the household registration statistics in 1969,” said Hsiao.

According to the MOI, with more veterans passing away and more men starting to move abroad in recent years, the number of male citizens in Taiwan has started to decrease. Moreover, there has been an increase in the number of foreign spouses in recent years, which gradually closed the gap between the male and female populations.

Based on an estimate conducted by the Council for Economic Planning and Development, the sex ratio will lower to 93.1 in 47 years, with 93.1 males per 100 women.

The MOI said that even though the female population exceeds the male population now, the traditional idea of patriarchy still exists. The current sex ratio at birth is 108 boys to 100 girls, which suggests that people in Taiwan still prefer baby boys.

According to the MOI, the sex ratio in the age group between 30 and 50 years old is lower, which means that the number of men is lower than the number of women in that age group.

“That statistic can probably provide an explanation for the fact that more middle-aged women cannot find a partner that they want to get married to,” said Hsiao. “Plus, more men in Taiwan are choosing to marry foreign partners in recent years.”

Room for Improvement on Sex Ratio at Birth: MHW

The Ministry of Health and Welfare (MHW) said that there is still room for improvement for the sex ratio at birth in Taiwan.

Hung Pai-hsun of the MHW said that based on the sex ratio at birth from this January to August, the number of boys was 66,498 while the number of girls was 61,696, leading to a sex ratio at birth of 1.078, a little higher than the ideal 1.06.

“Based on the MHW's survey, some women still have the pressure to give birth to a boy and the expectation from the elders is usually one of the sources of the pressure,” said Hung.

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