Foxconn’s billionaire founder, Terry Gou, has announced he intends to enter Taiwan’s 2024 presidential race as an independent.” Touting his business and finance experience at the tech giant, Gou is pledging to boost the country’s economy and fix its relations with China. “Give me four years and I promise that I will bring 50 years of peace to the Taiwan Strait and build the deepest foundation for the mutual trust across the strait … Taiwan must not become Ukraine and I will not let Taiwan become the next Ukraine.” The Guardian reports:
Gou has hinted at running for several months after he was not chosen as the candidate for the main opposition party, the Kuomintang (KMT). He pledged support for the KMT’s chosen candidate, Hou Yo-ih, but continued to hold public campaign-style events. Gou will need to collect 290,000 signatures by early November to qualify as an independent candidate.
The entrance of Gou into the campaign adds further intrigue to what was already an unusual race. Lai Ching-te, the current vice-president and presidential nominee for the ruling DPP, is polling ahead of both the KMT’s Hou, the current mayor of New Taipei City and a former police chief, and Ko Wen-je, the former mayor of Taipei City and nominee for the Taiwan People’s party he founded. A poll last week found Lai’s support was at 43%, compared with 27% for Ko, and just 14% for the KMT’s Hou. More than 16% were undecided or refused to answer.
In his speech Gou called for an anti-DPP coalition. Ko, Hou and Gou are all considered to be from the pan-blue side of Taiwanese politics which adheres more closely to a Chinese identity. However initial reaction from analysts was that Gou’s entry into the race would probably split the blue vote further and instead benefit the DPP.
Originally Posted at https://slashdot.org/