National Defense

National Security

Policy Overview
The Taiwan People’s Party (TTP) cross-strait policy is "Taiwan's sovereignty and cross-strait peace." To achieve this goal, in addition to actively rebuilding cross-strait exchanges and effectively managing risks, it is essential to establish a robust defense to possess a formidable deterrent force to ensure the cross-strait peace and exchanges. Therefore, we must be prepared for warfare, build a capable and competitive force, and exhibit iron will and unwavering determination to defend sovereignty when facing malicious intentions from the enemy. Simultaneously, we will act as a guardian of regional peace and stability and refrain from provoking conflicts proactively. This encapsulates the vision of the Taiwan People’s Party's defense policy: "Prepare for war without fearing it, be capable of combat without seeking it."

Issue Analysis
I. External Threats

A.  National defense is the cornerstone that upholds cross-strait and international relations. Taiwan faces a "total war" scenario, encompassing political, economic, military, and psychological threats and competition on all fronts.
B. The increasing military imbalance across the strait makes it challenging for Taiwan to sustain operations relying solely on asymmetric warfare strategies. Therefore, anti-blockade measures have become increasingly important.
C. The People's Liberation Army continues to encroach upon Taiwan's strategic space and chip away at our response time through incremental actions, imposing substantial maintenance costs on the military and reducing training opportunities for naval and aerial forces.
D. Non-traditional threats from the Chinese Communists include cognitive warfare, psychological operations, cyberattacks, and gray-zone strategies, creating a blurred boundary between war and peace in a complex threat landscape.

II. Internal Challenge

A. In contemporary society, two major concerns continue to cast a shadow over the ROC armed forces - a perceived adherence to excessive formalism and a notable deficiency in human-centric management. These issues stand as formidable stumbling blocks to the pursuit of military modernization.
B. Cases of espionage, procurement irregularities, and internal scandals in recent years have eroded public trust in the ROC armed forces. Lack of accountability for involved officials, some of them even been promoted, has negatively impacted morale and public opinion.
C. Currently in the military, the shortage of personnel looms as a grave concern. Beyond the overt challenges of recruitment shortfalls and a decline in retention rates lies a deeper issue - the pervasive and toxic undercurrent of military culture. This culture, which persists despite ongoing efforts at reform, constitutes a significant factor in discouraging young soldiers from continuing their service.
D. The routine normalization of special budgets within the defense sector has raised valid concerns, particularly regarding its potential to disrupt the carefully structured annual defense budget. This disruption not only impacts the allocation of resources among the three pivotal facets of military investment, personnel retention, and equipment maintenance but also raises suspicions of circumventing parliamentary oversight. Such practices appear to be at odds with the principles of transparency and accountability, fundamental to the political values upheld by the TPP.
E. The monopolization of domestically produced military equipment by state-owned entities, without effective supervising mechanisms.

National Defense Policy 
Taiwan People's Party vision of national defense "Prepare for war without fearing it, be capable of combat without pursuing it" rest on the following four fundamental goals:

1. A resilient military: in the face of formidable adversaries, our enduring military will persevere with unwavering determination;
2. a trustworthy military: bestowed with trust and support from the citizens of our nation, our military maintains exceptional reliability;
3. a cooperative military: our versatile military is poised to excel in active-duty-reserve integration, whole-of-nation defense, and effective collaboration with allied forces; and
4. an adaptable military: to prepare for future battlefields, our military must continuously enhance unit specialization and knowledge. They must adeptly apply emerging tactical strategies and state-of-the-art technology to ensure adaptability.
In pursuit of these four military objectives, Taiwan People's Party has articulated a comprehensive military reforming plan with six crucial dimensions: combat readiness, specialization, rationalization, transparency, informatization, and scientific modernization. Notably, enhancing information warfare capabilities emerges as a paramount priority within this strategic framework. This overarching paradigm, encapsulated as "Two Visions, Four Fundamental Goals, Six Reform Directions," constitutes Ko Wen-je's nuanced vision for national defense policy.


I. The six directions for military reform include:

1. Combat Readiness
We underscore the importance of simulating real battlefield conditions for raining both frontline and reserve forces.

2. Specialization
We maintain an unwavering commitment to reducing non-combat-related tasks and optimizing administrative procedures to allocate more time for training. Our approach leverages science and technology to enhance training efficiency.

3. Rationalization
The drive for rationalization in management is poised to facilitate a more thorough implementation of "mission-oriented command," where authorities and responsibilities are effectively decentralized. This approach enables military units to autonomously fulfill their respective tasks in dispersed battlefields, operating in smaller, more independent units. Furthermore, through raising salary for professional armed forces and nurturing a sense of belonging and honor among officers and soldiers to boost retention rates and alleviate manpower shortage issue. 

4. Transparency
The principle of transparency involves timely disclosure of information to both the public and the legislative body for enhanced oversight. Additionally, it entails shedding more light on the disruptive actions taken by the People's Liberation Army, providing the free world with a deeper understanding of how the Chinese Communist Party employs military and non-military tactics to erode our national sovereignty.

5. Informatization
The modernization of our military's information capabilities encompasses three distinct subdomains within the domain of "information warfare": Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C4ISR), Electronic Warfare (EW), and Cyber Warfare (CW). Information warfare constitutes an integral facet of contemporary conflict and stands as a linchpin in asymmetric warfare, where achieving victory with limited resources is paramount. Regrettably, this crucial arena has been historically underemphasized. Ko Wen-je recognizes the pressing need to optimize resource allocation and nurture the cultivation of expertise in the realm of information warfare to fortify this critical yet often overlooked battleground.

6. Scientific Modernization
Given the demands of modern warfare, which necessitates swift and precise deployment of forces and logistical systems across various military branches, we are proactively implementing scientific management protocols. This strategic approach not only ensures preparedness for a broad spectrum of mission requirements but also elevates the efficacy of our training regimens within the constraints of time and space.


Additional Specific Policies:

I. Fiscal Policy
Recognizing the substantial disparity in military strength across the Taiwan Strait, it is imperative to gradually increase the national defense budget with the aim of reaching 3% of GDP. Simultaneously, we must curtail the use of special budgets to ensure fiscal discipline and accountability. Furthermore, a substantial yet reasonable increase in operational maintenance expenditures is essential to enhance overall readiness, facilitating the requirements for combat training and the safeguarding of sovereignty. 

II. Military Investment 
To ensure the acquisition of essential combat equipment that meets the required standards and timelines, the focus is on establishing diverse procurement channels. Simultaneously, efforts are directed towards securing technology transfer agreements through industrial cooperation that facilitate domestic production of ammunition and weapon systems, thereby bolstering the nation's defense industry capabilities. Domestically, the strategy involves harnessing civilian expertise to channel national research and development resources into projects that are essential, progressive, feasible, and involve equipment that is not readily available. This approach steers development efforts towards areas such as unmanned vehicles, precision munitions, long-range capabilities, artificial intelligence, and cost-effective solutions. For readily available equipment, direct procurement is considered, eliminating the need for redundant research and development efforts.

III. Defense Industry
Through a strategic blend of government and commercial procurement, efforts are underway to galvanize private sector engagement within the defense industry. Concurrently, negotiations for technology transfer agreements that support domestic production of foreign-acquired equipment are being pursued, as well as incentivizing foreign companies specializing in critical technologies to establish production facilities in Taiwan. This multifaceted approach is poised to catalyze the evolution of Taiwan's defense industry, offering a springboard for businesses to leverage their manufacturing prowess. This, in turn, facilitates their integration into the global defense supply chain and opens doors to expansion in the dual-use military-civilian sector markets.