Prostitution in Taiwan

This article is about Prostitution in Taiwan. See also Prostitution in Hong Kong and Prostitution in mainland China.

Prostitution in Taiwan is now illegal. Before 1997, it was legal but under governmental regulation. The licensing of new brothels had been stopped in 1974 and licenses could not be transferred. In 1997 prostitution was declared to be illegal by the Taipei City Council in the city of Taipei. The mayor at that time was Chen Shuibian who firmly effectuated the law and incurred the anger of sex workers. However, the law was supported by the majority of Taipei citizens. Former sex workers with license then formed Collective Of Sex Workers And Supporters (COSWAS) to support these middle aged sex workers and promote legalization of sex work.

Taiwan has been the destination for the trafficking of women for the purposes of prostitution, typically from mainland China, Vietnam and Thailand. Women from Taiwan have also been known to be sold to the Yakuza in Japan by foreign organized criminals.

Floating brothels are a booming business off the coast of Jinmen, just out of the reach of the Coast Guard. The Government estimates there are 30,000 minors in prostitution in Taiwan.

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