What you need to know
It's tough to be a female artist in Taiwan, but not so bad to be a plumber.
On paper, Taiwan's gender wage gap isn't half bad; on par with many developed nations and much better than Japan, Korea or China.
A deeper look, however, shows these gains leave many industries behind.
The total gender pay gap in Taiwan was 14 percent in 2016 according to the Ministry of Labor, with the average Taiwanese man earning NT$308 (US$10.40) per hour compared to NT$265 for the average woman.
More detailed statistics from the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) under the Executive Yuan show a 16 percent pay gap. These numbers only represent payrolled employees as part of DGBAS’s accounting operation; self-employed citizens are not counted.
This means that women would have to work many more days to keep up, but this varies wildly by industry.
The wage gap decreased by half between 1997 and today.
In 1980, men made twice as much in real estate as women, a difference that has been completely eliminated. Some professions have even seen disparities increase; artists and entertainers used to be quite egalitarian, but men’s wages have shot up while women's have stagnated.
Here's the 2016 wage gap for each of DGBAS's categories.
|Employment Sector||Wage gap (percent)|
|Plumbing and water works||2|
|Hotels and food service||11|
|Transportation and warehousing||15|
|Communications and media||18|
|Electricity and gas||20|
|Chemical products manufacturing||30|
|Alcohol and tobacco manufacturing||30|
|Electronic equipment manufacturing||31|
|Electronic parts and components manufacturing||34|
|Industrial Repair and installation||34|
|Arts and entertainment||35|
|Human health services||45|
(Note: government statistics should always be taken with a grain of salt.)