60.9 Overall Score (up 0.9 since Aug 1st.)


  • 65.6 Public Health
  • 38.1 Financial
  • 100 Fact-Based
  • 65.6 Public Health
  • 38.1 Financial
  • 100 Fact-Based

Taiwan has a relatively strong overall policy score, but does not score as highly as expected due to a lack of lockdown, minimal stimulus, and weak support for debt relief. Given data limitations, the score likely underestimates Taiwan’s very strong contact-tracing policy, which is so advanced that it may have diminished the need for other policy responses.

Pre-COVID Conditions

Taiwan scored well in pre-pandemic subcategories, but a lack of available data obscures the picture.

  • Debt/GDP ratio 35.1%
  • GDP/capita $57,214
  • Gini coefficient (out of 100) NO DATA
  • Infant mortality rate (out of 1,000 live births) NO DATA
  • Healthcare access score (out of 100) 77.6
  • Hospital beds/1,000 People NO DATA

Government Response

Select a data point for more information
(Data points represent policy level as of Oct 1.)

Public Health Directives

Taiwan scored relatively strongly, driven by its extremely effective contact tracing—demonstrated by a consistently low case rate—which resulted in very low case numbers that allowed Taiwan not to need more stringent policies.

  • Stay at home order 0
  • Public gathering restrictions 3
  • School closings 0
  • Public event cancellations 0
  • Testing policy 0
  • Emergency healthcare investments/capita $23.55
  • Travel restrictions 3
  • Tests/1,000 people 3.9
  • Contact tracing 2

Financial Response

Taiwan had a limited financial response, with a small stimulus and limited income support and debt-forbearance policy; its financial support was minimal relative to fellow leaders in virus containment.

  • Financial stimulus as share of GDP 5.5%
  • Income support 1
  • Debt forebearance 1

Fact-Based Communication

Taiwan’s government is very strong in this category, as it has not engaged in misinformation or limited press freedom in response to COVID-19.

  • Reliance on science/fact based information 0
  • Press freedom 0

COVID-19 Status as of Oct 1

Taiwan has performed very strongly across all subcategories, with both low death and case rates and a low positivity rate, likely boosted by its strong pre-pandemic capacity, and successful, tech-enabled response.

  • Total deaths 7
  • Death rate per 100K 0.3
  • Total cases 514
  • Cases per 100K 22
  • Percent of positive tests 0.3
  • Change in positivity rates -0.8
Case Trend Line
Daily cases
Date Status New Cases/1M
1 Feb 25 Schools reopen 0.05

Differentiating Factors

  • Fake news attacks Vietnamese communities: The Taiwanese government dismissed several social media posts about a lockdown of cities due to outbreaks in the Vietnamese communities, quelling anxities and fears from Vietnamese in Taiwan. Read More
  • Taiwan's UN bid focuses on COVID-19 successes: Taiwan's campaign to rejoin the UN in 2020 will highlight its leadership in fighting COVID-19 and its commitment to multilateralism, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which plans to hold events alongside the UNGA in September. Read More
  • Government-run facemask production limited shortages: The Taiwanese government took control of face mask production and distribution in January, upping the country's daily production of masks to 10 million, and ensuring that every citizen could buy masks by initially rationing their distribution. Read More
  • Centralized healthcare system key to strong contact tracing: Taiwan's healthcare system is centralized and well-coordinated, which has supported its success in containing the virus. Big data analytics of infection hotspots, proactive testing, and comprehensive contact tracing have all been facilitated by the country's robust healthcare system and experience responding to the SARS crisis. Read More
  • High trust in government helped early on: A poll conducted by YouGov in May found that 80 percent of respondents had a high level of trust in the government and health authorities. This has been key, particularly in the early days of the pandemic. Read More
Compared with Other Island Nations
  • 69
    Indonesia 287,008
    Per 1M

    Indonesia performs relatively strongly in the Index, with consistent scores across all categories.

  • 96.8
    Japan 83,010
    Per 1M

    Japan has a very strong overall score, driven by its generous financial response and a reliance on facts, although its public health policy is slightly below the median.

  • 100
    New Zealand 1,480
    Per 1M

    New Zealand has had very strong policy, particularly its reliance on science and facts, and its very strong financial response.

Further Reading From Foreign Policy

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New Zealand

Statistics and government response factors available on each country profile include:

Pre-COVID Conditions:

  • Debt to GDP ratio
  • Infant mortality rates
  • Hospital beds per 1,000 people
  • Gini coefficients measuring inequality
  • Health access and quality

COVID-19 Public Health Directives:

  • Stay-at home orders
  • School-closing policy
  • Public-gathering restrictions
  • Cancellation of public events
  • Testing policy and rates per 1,000 people
  • Emergency healthcare spending per capita
  • Travel restrictions
  • Contact tracing

COVID-19 Financial Response:

  • Stimulus package as a share of GDP
  • Income support
  • Debt-forbearance

Public Communications:

  • Instances of misinformation by leadership
  • Limitations on press freedom, censorship

Current/Historic In-Country COVID-19 Status:

  • Death rates per 1 million
  • Case rates per 1 million