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Taiwan to create reserve mobilisation agency

Taiwan's Legislative Yuan has passed a bill aimed at setting up a National Defense Mobilization Agency (NDMA) from 1 January 2022: a move that brings the island closer to implementing an all-out defence concept and establishing a proper reserve force amid the growing threat posed by China's People's Liberation Army.

Passed on 21 May, the amendments to the organisation act of the Ministry of National Defense (MND) and the NDMA act will result in the merger of the All-Out Defense Mobilization Office and the Armed Forces Reserve Command – both of which are currently under the MND – to create the new agency.

The MND and the new NDMA will work in conjunction with the Executive Yuan's All-Out Defense Mobilization Committee and its affiliated agencies – as well as city and county governments – to implement the national defense mobilisation. The director of the new agency will have duties equivalent to those of a lieutenant-general or β€˜G14' civil servant, the latter of which is the most senior grade within Taiwan's civil service.

The NDMA will be in charge of management, planning, troop selection, troop formation, training, and mobilisation of the reserve force, as well as oversight of military supplies, military transportation, and munitions.

The bills will now be sent to President Tsai Ing-wen for promulgation and to the Executive Yuan for execution.

In February the MND announced changes to the reservist call-up system to improve the country's combat readiness. Starting in 2022, reservists will be called-up for a two-week training period, rather than 5–7 days under the current system. Call-ups could occur on an annual basis rather than every two years.

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