Chiang Ching-kuo


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(b. 18 Mar. 1910, d. 13 Jan. 1988).

President of the Republic of China (Taiwan) 1978–88 Born in Fengwah, he studied at the University of Shanghai, and was then sent by his father, Chiang Kai‐shek, to study at the Sun Yat‐sen University in Moscow. Following a decline in relations between his father and Stalin, he was only allowed to leave the country with his Russian wife in 1937. Thereafter, he was groomed by his father to succeed him. He followed his father to Taiwan, and held a number of increasingly important posts within the government and the National Party, including Minister of Defence (1965–9) and Deputy Prime Minister (1969–72). He became Prime Minister in 1972, and immediately embarked upon a programme of political reform. He instigated an anti‐corruption drive, introduced a (gradual) political opening, and supported the appointment of more Taiwanese to positions of importance in government and the National Party, making Lee Teng‐hui his deputy. As President, he continued promoting economic liberalism, investment, and education which became the basis of the country's spectacular economic growth. He was a popular leader, not just for his policies, but also for his approachable and low‐key manner.

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945) — Politics.

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