The Ministry of National Defense of the Republic of China (Taiwan) released its second Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) in early March. The QDR presents a comprehensive examination of developments in Taiwan’s security environment and explains updates in its planning and strategy. As in the United States and other countries, the document is a reflection of the president’s strategic priorities, a serious planning exercise and a public relations tool which seeks to inform the public and win its support.
On April 29, the Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies (CNAPS) at Brookings and the Freeman Chair in China Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) hosted a discussion on Taiwan’s recently released QDR. Vice Minister of National Defense for Policy Andrew N.D. Yang, presented the Ma Ying-jeou administration’s views of the Asia-Pacific security environment and Taiwan’s defense transformation. Chia-Sheng Chen, director of the defense ministry’s Defense Net Assessment Division, explained the QDR in more detail. Phillip Saunders of the National Defense University added his personal perspective on the security challenges Taiwan faces and the way it addresses them in the QDR.