iPhone maker Foxconn’s founder Terry Gou on Monday announced an independent bid for the Taiwan presidential election in January 2024.
The 72-year-old tech billionaire is now the fourth candidate for the top position, reports Nikkei Asia.
He is pitted against Vice President Lai Ching-te of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Taiwan People's Party Chairman Ko Wen-je, and New Taipei Mayor Hou Yu-ih of the China-friendly Kuomintang (KMT).
Gou said at a press conference he will "make Taiwan overtake Singapore within 20 years" and have the highest GDP per capita in Asia.
"If Singapore can do it, so can Taiwan. We need to pull the country back to the path of peace and prosperity through this election. Only by doing so can hundreds of industries safely develop and can people live and work in peace and contentment,” Gou was quoted as saying.
"Taiwan should absolutely not become Ukraine. I shall never let Taiwan be the next Ukraine," said Gou.
"I can guarantee that I'll bring 50 years of peace to the Taiwan Strait."
Gou needs sufficient nominations to officially become a presidential candidate in November.
Founded in 1974, Foxconn grew to become an international business empire, becoming the largest private employer and exporter in mainland China with a workforce of 1.2 million.
As of 2022, Gou had a net worth of $6.8 billion.
In 2019, Gou resigned from Foxconn and joined the Kuomintang (KMT) to run for President. Once described as an "old friend" by Chinese President Xi Jinping, Gou has been characterised as friendly to Chinese business interests during his political and business career.