Tiananmen’s tremors: The economic, political, and strategic impact of the democracy movement on Taiwan

Dennis Van Vranken Hickey, Missouri State University


This chapter examines the democracy movement’s effect on Taiwan and explores economic, political, and strategic repercussions of the movement. In Taiwan, however, real estate maintained its upward climb, and the stock exchange continued to multiply in value. In some respects, Taiwan benefited economically from the mainland’s political turmoil. In 1987, commerce received further encouragement when Taiwan enacted a law enabling people in Taiwan to visit relatives on the mainland. Taiwan officially bans direct investment in mainland China by Taiwanese corporations. The democratization and economic progress of Taiwan began to attract attention long before the June 4 crackdown in Beijing. “Taiwan fever” spread rapidly from mainland China’s younger generation into the population as a whole. People from all walks of life began to praise the Taiwan experience. The democracy movement has yielded a number of unanticipated dividends for Taiwan. The violent crackdown in Beijing has led Taiwan military leaders to call for an increase in defense spending.