One reason I don’t like to argue much about local support for Taiwan independence is that it has been very difficult to say for sure what it is. But a recent poll may have changed all that, as the Taipei Times reports:

Sixty-two percent of Taiwanese respondents to a recent survey conducted jointly in four different locations by the Election Study Center of National Chengchi University, the Okinawa-based University of the Ryukyus and the University of Hong Kong said that if Beijing “allowed” Taiwanese to decide the future of the nation, the country should seek formal independence.


A further 54 percent of Taiwanese respondents said that even if Beijing did not “allow” Taiwan to pursue independence, that should still be the goal.

Previous polls have not asked what the locals would support if China grew up and gave up its claim to Taiwan, so this poll is a notable advance for having asked that question. Support for independence will continue climbing, as long as Taiwan remains out of the clutches of Beijing.