Taipei--The number of women in Taiwan who chose to waive their right to inheritance last year surpassed that of their male counterparts by 7,000 people, according to Ministry of Finance figures released on Sunday.
According to the ministry statistics, 30,000 women in 2015 waived their right to inheritance, while only 23,000 men did so. Meanwhile, among the 210,000 individuals who paid their estate and gift tax during this period, female heirs only accounted for about 40 percent of the total, or 82,000 people.
According to tradition, only males can pass down property and the family name, the Finance Ministry said, pointing out that although Taiwanese males and females are equal before the law and have an equal right to inheritance, females are often pressured to waive their right to inheritance based on this tradition.
Although there are various reasons other than tradition as to why women would choose to abandon their right to inheritance, gender inequality is still prevalent in Taiwan, said Sherry Chang (??), head of communications and global transfer pricing services country leader at KPMG in Taiwan.
In a traditional Chinese society, women tend to be regarded as economically dependent, and are often pressured to give up their inheritance rights in the face of opposition from their male kin, the ministry explained.
Although much progress has been made to protect and promote women's rights in recent years, there is still room for improvement, especially in Taiwan, it said.
Even though the changes will not come overnight, the Finance Ministry said it is optimistic that equality between the sexes will become more prominent in the long run with the increase of awareness on gender equality.
Given that women contribute to the economy as much as men in today's knowledge-based era, we expect the equality indexes to improve in the future, the ministry said.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel