Startup Island Taiwan Contributing to Global Innovation Ecosystem Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic
- Online Date: 2020/03/16
- Modify Date: 2020/03/16
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect the global economy, technology is simultaneously helping businesses and people to adapt to new modes of working and living. The pandemic and the rapid development of the related technology applications are expected to accelerate the shift in the way we live and work every day.
For example, very early on during the COVID-19 outbreak, to help citizens to acquire facemasks more easily and curb the spread of the virus, Taiwan’s Digital Minister Audrey Tang gathered a group of engineers to develop an app for locating the nearest available stores with real time facemask inventory numbers.
More recently, the group led by Tang launched a new version of the app which enables citizens to use their national healthcare ID cards to make online purchases. Over 88,000 people pre-ordered their designated quota of masks in the first week.
It is estimated that some 2.33 million people in Taiwan will use the app to purchase facemasks online, which will in turn greatly increase the efficiency in which the scarce resource is rationed to the public.
Technology has been a driving force behind Taiwan's economy, and the country has long been recognized as a Technology leader and innovator since the 80s. As an international innovation and startup hub, Taiwan offers various key advantages, including:
- A superb testing ground for a variety of tech applications.
- A dynamic market to test consumer acceptance of new services, applications or products.
- A vigilant legal system for IP protection.
***InnoVEX, a major exhibit of COMPUTEX, is one of the most important international startup events in Taiwan, featuring high tech forums, pitch contest, demos, matchmaking, networking and startup tour. Last year, InnoVEX attracted 467 startups from 25 countries to display top innovations.
***In the World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report 2019, Taiwan placed 12th among 141 countries and economies. In the 2018 edition, Taiwan was described as a ‘Super Innovator’ along with Germany, Switzerland and the USA. According to a report by the Institute for Management Development (IMD) in 2019, Taiwan is the 13th most digitally competitive out of 63 countries.
***As of today, March 13, the COVID-19 outbreak has resulted in more than 130,000 confirmed cases worldwide. As of writing, a total of 50 confirmed cases were reported in Taiwan, with 1 deceased, 20 released from isolation, and the remainder hospitalized in stable condition. The current data indicated that, the risk of infection to international travelers within Taiwan is still considered low to minimal.
***The latest reports as shown in the following table
(newly acquired cases today)
|China, including Hong Kong (130),
and Macau (10)
|Republic of Korea||7,979 (110)|
|2 cruise ships in international conveyance||696 (0)|
|The Netherlands||614 (232)|
|State of Qatar||263 (1)|
|Czech Republic||96 (56)|
|San Marino||69 (18)|
|Saudi Arabia||62 (NA)|
|The Philippines||52 (17)|