2018 Taiwanese referendum

A multi-question referendum was held in Taiwan on 24 November 2018 alongside local elections. The referendum was the first since the December 2017 reform to the Referendum Act, which reduced the threshold for submitting questions to the ballot; under the new system, signatures from 1.5 percent of the electorate (around 280,000 people) were required to successfully put a question on the ballot, reduced from 5 percent previously.[1]


A total of ten questions appeared on the ballot.[2] Under Taiwanese law, for their initiative to be presented to the voters, a total of 280,000 signatures (1.5% of eligible voters) were required for a question to be considered by the Central Election Commission (CEC).[3] Five of the questions reviewed and approved by the CEC were about LGBT rights, LGBT sex education and same-sex marriage. Four other questions on the ballot concerned international games representation, nuclear power, coal power and a ban on imports of agricultural products and food from areas affected by the Fukushima nuclear disaster.[4][5][6] The tenth question asked voters to reject Article 95-1 of the Electricity Act, which stipulated that all of the country's nuclear power generating facilities should be decommissioned by 2025.[7] This question had originally been rejected by the CEC, though the commission reversed its decision after being ordered by the Taipei High Administrative Court to accept an additional 24,000 signatures added to the petition.[7]

For a proposal to be approved, at least 25 percent of the eligible voters had to vote in favour of the question.[8][9]

Same-sex marriage proposalsEdit

In February 2018, a Taiwanese conservative Christian group opposed to same-sex marriage (the Alliance for Next Generation's Happiness) proposed holding a referendum on the issue, aiming to overturn a May 2017 ruling by the Constitutional Court that mandated the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Taiwan within two years. The Central Election Commission reviewed and accepted the group's proposals in April 2018.[10][11] Two of their approved questions were related to same-sex marriage; one on whether marriage should be limited to a bond between a man and a woman and one on whether there should be a special law to protect same-sex couples' right to a "permanent union" (effectively introducing civil unions). A third question will ask voters whether to prevent the implementation of laws mandating the inclusion of information about homosexuality in sexual education classes at schools.[12][13]

In September 2018, a group in favor of same-sex marriage announced that it had collected enough signatures to submit its own questions to a referendum. The group's questions would require the legislature to amend the Civil Code to expressly allow same-sex couples to marry and also mandated the inclusion of gender diversity in sex education.[14]

CEC-approved questionsEdit

The ten questions that appeared on the ballot were (with original Chinese language in parentheses):[15][16]

1. (National Referendum Proposition 7) Do you agree “To reduce by 1% year by year” the electricity production of thermal power plants? (你是否同意以「平均每年至少降低1%」之方式逐年降低火力發電廠發電量?)

2. (National Referendum Proposition 8) Do you agree to the establishment of an energy policy to “Stop construction and expansion of any coal-fired thermal power plants or generator units (including the Shen Ao Power Plant currently under construction)”? (您是否同意確立「停止新建、擴建任何燃煤發電廠或發電機組(包括深澳電廠擴建)」之能源政策?)

3. (National Referendum Proposition 9) Do you agree that the government should maintain the prohibition of agricultural imports and food from areas affected by the Fukushima March 11 Disaster? Specifically, those from Fukushima proper and the 4 surrounding districts and cities of Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma, and Chiba? (你是否同意政府維持禁止開放日本福島311核災相關地區,包括福島與周遭4縣市(茨城、櫪木、群馬、千葉)等地區農產品及食品進口?)

4. (National Referendum Proposition 10) Do you agree that marriage defined in the Civil Code should be restricted to the union between one man and one woman? (你是否同意民法婚姻規定應限定在一男一女的結合?)

5. (National Referendum Proposition 11) Do you agree that the Ministry of Education should not implement the Enforcement Rules of the Gender Equality Education Act in elementary and middle schools? (你是否同意在國民教育階段內(國中及國小),教育部及各級學校不應對學生實施性別平等教育法施行細則所定之同志教育?)

6. (National Referendum Proposition 12) Do you agree to the protection of the rights of same-sex couples in co-habitation on a permanent basis in ways other than changing of the Civil Code? (你是否同意以民法婚姻規定以外之其他形式來保障同性別二人經營永久共同生活的權益?)

7. (National Referendum Proposition 13) Do you agree to the use of “Taiwan” when participating in all international sport competitions, including the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics? (你是否同意,以「台灣」(Taiwan)為全名申請參加所有國際運動賽事及2020年東京奧運?)

8. (National Referendum Proposition 14) Do you agree to the protection of same-sex marital rights with marriage as defined in the Civil Code? (您是否同意,以民法婚姻章保障同性別二人建立婚姻關係?)

9. (National Referendum Proposition 15) Do you agree in accordance with the Gender Equality Education Act that national education of all levels should educate students on the importance of gender equality, emotional education, sex education, and same-sex education? (您是否同意,以「性別平等教育法」明定在國民教育各階段內實施性別平等教育,且內容應涵蓋情感教育、性教育、同志教育等課程?)

10. (National Referendum Proposition 16) Do you agree to repeal Article 95 Paragraph 1 of the Electricity Act: “Should Nuclear-energy-based power generating facilities shall stop running by 2025”? (您是否同意:廢除電業法第95條第1項,即廢除「核能發電設備應於中華民國一百十四年以前,全部停止運轉」之條文?)


Question For Against Invalid/
Total Registered
Turnout Outcome
Votes % Votes %
Reducing output from thermal power plants 7,955,753 79.04 2,109,157 20.96 715,140 10,780,050 19,757,067 54.56 Approved
Ceasing expansion of coal power plants 7,599,267 76.41 2,346,316 23.59 823,945 10,769,528 54.51 Approved
Prohibition of food imports from Fukushima 7,791,856 77.74 2,231,425 22.26 756,041 10,779,322 54.56 Approved
Restricting marriage under Civil Code to one man and woman 7,658,008 72.48 2,907,429 27.52 459,508 11,024,945 55.80 Approved
Not implementing homosexual aspect of Gender Equality Education Act 7,083,379 67.44 3,419,624 32.56 507,101 11,010,104 55.73 Approved
Protecting rights of same-sex couples outside of the Civil Code 6,401,748 61.12 4,072,471 38.88 540,757 11,014,976 55.75 Approved
Competing in international sports as "Taiwan" 4,763,086 45.20 5,774,556 54.80 505,153 11,042,795 55.89 Rejected
Protection of same-sex marital rights 3,382,286 32.74 6,949,697 67.26 608,484 10,940,467 55.37 Rejected
Implementing the Gender Equality Education Act 3,507,665 34.01 6,805,171 65.99 619,001 10,931,837 55.33 Rejected
Repealing the planned end of nuclear power stations 5,895,560 59.49 4,014,215 40.51 922,960 10,832,735 54.83 Approved
Source: CEC


  1. ^ "Taiwan to hold 7 referendums during Nov. local elections". Taiwan News. 10 October 2018.
  2. ^ "ELECTIONS: CEC raises incentives for poll monitors, volunteers". Taipei Times. 25 October 2018.
  3. ^ "Group proposes referendum for special law for same-sex couples". Focus Taiwan News Channel. 9 February 2018.
  4. ^ "CEC approves 7 referendums alongside local elections". Focus Taiwan. 9 October 2018.
  5. ^ "CEC approves 2 more referendum proposals, making 9 in total". Focus Taiwan. 16 October 2018.
  6. ^ "Momentum Builds For Nuclear Power With Referendum Approved In Taiwan And "Pride Fest" in Germany". Forbes. 24 October 2018.
  7. ^ a b "CEC passes referendum on nuclear-free homeland". Taipei Times. 24 October 2018.
  8. ^ "Referendum Act amendments approved". Taipei Times. 13 December 2017.
  9. ^ "Art. 29 of the Referendum Act". Laws & Regulations Database of the Republic of China.
  10. ^ "CEC passes review of same-sex marriage referendum proposals". Focus Taiwan. 18 April 2018.
  11. ^ "Referendum Against Gay Marriage Reaches Necessary Threshold". newbloommag.net. 18 April 2018.
  12. ^ "Taiwan to hold same-sex marriage referendum". News Hub. 9 October 2018. Archived from the original on 13 October 2018. Retrieved 12 October 2018.
  13. ^ "Taiwan to hold public vote on special law for same-sex marriage". Channel News Asia. 9 October 2018.
  14. ^ "With 9,000 signatures per day, Taiwan petition for marriage equality passes referendum threshold". Taiwan News. 1 September 2018.
  15. ^ "中選會發布全國性公民投票案第7案至第拾陸案投票公告". Central Election Commission (in Chinese). 24 October 2018.
  16. ^ "2018 Referendum". Central Election Commission. 24 Nov 2018. Archived from the original on 24 Nov 2018.

External linksEdit