Ma’s approval ratings soar from recovering economy

The China Post news staff

TAIPEI, Taiwan — President Ma Ying-jeou’s approval ratings are at its highest since last July, soaring up to 38.2 percent for the month of October, with surveys citing the gradual recovery of the economy as the main reason for the increased confidence in the nation’s leader. According to polls conducted by the Global Views Survey Research Center, 49.1 percent of voters disapprove of Ma, which is down by 6.5 percentage points compared to numbers from last July.

Ma’s trust index ratings have also risen to 46.1 percent, up 6.3 percentage points from last year while his level of distrust went down by 4.4 percentage points to 37 percent.

The Global Views Survey Research Center found the increase in confidence as the result of the improving economy as well as the foreseeable benefits in the signing of the economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA). But whether Ma can ever overcome the negative setback caused by Typhoon Morakot is still to be determined. As for cross-strait relations, 62.5 percent do not believe mainland China would dismantle missiles aimed at Taiwan before 2012. When polled on whether Taiwan should cease purchasing U.S. weapons if mainland China does dismantles the ballistic missiles, 65.7 percent were against the halt of U.S. armament sales (with 40.4 percent strongly against and 25.3 percent slightly against); 18.6 percent were for halting weapons sales while 15.6 percent were unclear on the issue. Furthermore, the survey found 77.2 percent of the public were against China blocking Taiwan’s participation in international organizations.