18 March 2014
Taiwan’s transformation from conscription to all-volunteer system has not been successful. This could weaken its defence situation.
THE MINISTRY of national defence (MND) in Taipei has encountered a number of difficulties in recruiting professional soldiers to supplement the manpower gap left by the termination of compulsory military service. The MND’s latest report to the Congress reflects a low level of recruitment, achieving just 30% of its goal, last year.
In the infantry and armour units, the recruitment rates are even lower at 4% and 16% respectively. As a result, the MND has postponed the start of full transformation by two years, ie 2016. Some relevant policies such as increasing salary and relaxing requirements are proposed by the MND to attract more young men to join the armed forces.
… Wu Shang-su is a research fellow in the Military Studies Programme of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University. He previously taught at the National Defence University in Taiwan and worked in the Legislative Yuan.
IDSS / RSIS / Online
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