What happened: Terry Gou, founder and chairman of Foxconn Technology Group, will run in Taiwan’s 2020 presidential election, he announced on Wednesday. The 68-year-old billionaire will participate in the pro-reunification Kuomintang (KMT) party’s primaries. Gou said he decided to run after the Buddhist goddess Mazu, who is worshiped by coastal dwellers in China, encouraged him to “do good things for people who are suffering” in his dream.
Why it’s important: The announcement comes after Reuters reported on Monday that Gou was about to resign from Foxconn, a major Apple supplier formally known as Hon Hai Precision Industry. Foxconn initially denied the reports to Chinese media, saying Gou just looked to take a back seat from day-to-day running of the company and focus on strategic planning. Gou’s candidacy prompted concerns over the uncertain impact of the company which has large business ties in mainland China, as well as the political and economic landscape across the Taiwan Straits. Gou seeks to succeed current Taiwanese president of Tsai Ing-wen of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which is in favor of an independent Taiwan.