The green color symbolizes the natural beauty of the island and the need to protect the environment; The white color represents the original purity of the people on the island, and the desire to preserve this natural beauty; The symbol in the middle depicts four hearts in harmony, representing the four population groups on the island -- aborigines, Hakka, Min-nan Taiwanese, and mainlanders -- who have to learn to live together in peace.
The 1996 "New Name, New Flag, New Anthem" campaign
During the past years, Taiwan has been gradually evolving into a new country. The clearest signs yet came when the democratic opposition initiated its "New Name, New Flag, New Anthem" campaign.
The debate on a new name has been going on for a long time. The ruling Kuomintang has been hanging on to its last threads of linkage with mainland China by clinging to the anachronistic "Republic of China" name, while the democratic opposition has pushed for a clear break with the muddy Chinese past, and has proposed that Taiwan be presented at home and abroad as a new and democratic entity, with the name "Taiwan."
To this debate the democratic opposition has now added the elements which are generally viewed as the symbols of a national identity: a new flag and a new anthem: the flag depicted here was selected after a wide competition in which 187 different flags were entered.