List of Presidents of the Republic of China

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Flag of the Republic of China
Not to be confused with the List of leaders of the Republic of China which implies self-proclaimed governments presidents of the Republic of China and warlords..
Presidential Office of the ROC Beiyang Government in Beijing (1912–1928).
Presidential Office of the ROC Nationalist Government in Nanjing (1928–1949).
Presidential Office of the ROC Government in Taipei, Taiwan (1949–current).

This is a list of the Presidents of the Republic of China (1912–present). The Republic of China's President is called 總統 (zǒngtǒng), and from 1912 to 1928, 大總統 (dàzǒngtǒng). The Republic of China before 1949 controlled mainland China as well as offshore islands. The Republic of China since 1949 has only controlled Taiwan and nearby islands. This current Republic of China is usually known as Taiwan.

Timeline of Presidents[edit]

Tsai Ing-wen Ma Ying-jeou Chen Shui-bian Lee Teng-hui Chiang Ching-kuo Yen Chia-kan Yan Xishan Li Zongren Lin Sen Chiang Kai-shek Tan Yankai Zhang Zuolin V.K. Wellington Koo Du Xigui Yan Huiqing Hu Weide Duan Qirui Huang Fu Cao Kun Gao Lingwei Zhou Ziqi Xu Shichang Feng Guozhang Li Yuanhong Yuan Shikai Sun Yat-sen

List of Presidents before the 1947 constitution[edit]

Presidents of the Provisional Government[edit]

  • Period: 1 January 1912 – 10 October 1913

  Tongmenghui   Beiyang clique, etc.

Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term of Office Political Party Vice President
1 Sunyatsen1.jpg Sun Yat-sen
孫文
Sūn Wén
(1866–1925)
1 January 1912 10 March 1912 Tongmenghui Li Yuanhong
1911 (94.11%)
The first President of the Provisional Government
2 YuanShika Colour.jpg Yuan Shikai
袁世凱
Yuán Shìkǎi
(1859–1916)
10 March 1912 10 October 1913 Beiyang clique Li Yuanhong
1912 (100%)
The second President of the Provisional Government

Presidents of the Beiyang Government[edit]

  • Period: 10 October 1913 – 2 June 1928

  Non-partisan   Beiyang clique, etc.   Progressive

Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term of Office Political Party Vice President
1 Yuan shikai.jpg Yuan Shikai
袁世凱
Yuán Shìkǎi
(1859–1916)
10 October 1913 6 June 1916[1] Beiyang clique Li Yuanhong
1913 (71.12%)
Died in office.
2 Li Yuan-hung Colour.jpg Li Yuanhong
黎元洪
Lí Yuánhóng
(1864–1928)
7 June 1916 17 July 1917[2] Progressive Party Feng Guozhang
As Vice-President under Yuan Shikai, Li became the president after Yuan's death.
3 Feng Kuo-chang.jpg Feng Guozhang
馮國璋
Féng Guózhāng
(1859–1919)
17 July 1917 10 October 1918 Zhili clique vacant
Due to Manchu Restoration, Li Yuanhong fled the presidential palace and appointed Vice President Feng Guozhang as Acting President.
4 Xu shichang Colour.jpg Xu Shichang
徐世昌
Xú Shìchāng
(1855–1939)
10 October 1918 2 June 1922 Anhui clique vacant
1918 (98.15%)
Zhou Ziqi.jpg Zhou Ziqi
周自齊
Zhōu Zìqí
(1871–1923)
2 June 1922 11 June 1922 Communications Clique vacant
5 Li Yuanhong.jpg Li Yuanhong
黎元洪
Lí Yuánhóng
(1864–1928)
11 June 1922 13 June 1923 Research Clique vacant
Kao Lin-wei Colour.jpg Gao Lingwei
高凌霨
Gāo Língwèi
(1868–1939)
14 June 1923 10 October 1923 Non-partisan vacant
6 Cao Kun.jpg Cao Kun
曹錕
Cáo Kūn
(1862–1938)
10 October 1923 2 November 1924 Zhili clique vacant
1923 (81.36%)
Huang Fu Colour.jpg Huang Fu
黃郛
Huáng Fú
(1883–1936)
2 November 1924 24 November 1924 Non-partisan vacant
7 DuanQirui.jpg Duan Qirui
段祺瑞
Duàn Qíruì
(1865–1936)
24 November 1924 20 April 1926 Anhui clique vacant
Duan was the Provisional Chief Executive instead of President.
Hu Weide.jpg Hu Weide
胡惟德
Hú Wéidé
(1863–1933)
20 April 1926 13 May 1926 Non-partisan vacant
Yan Huiqing.jpg Yan Huiqing
(W.W. Yan)

顏惠慶
Yán Huìqìng
(1877–1950)
13 May 1926 22 June 1926 Non-partisan vacant
Du Xigui.jpg Du Xigui
杜錫珪
Dù Xīguī
(1875–1933)
22 June 1926 1 October 1926 Zhili clique vacant
Wellington Koo 1945.jpg Koo Vi-kyuin
(Wellington Koo)

顧維鈞
Gù Wéijūn
(1888–1985)
1 October 1926 17 June 1927 Non-partisan vacant
8 Zhang Zuolin3.jpg Zhang Zuolin
張作霖
Zhāng Zuòlín
(1875–1928)
18 June 1927 2 June 1928 Fengtian clique vacant
Zhang was the Generalissimo of the Beiyang Military Government instead of President.

Heads of state of the Southern Government[edit]

  • Period: 10 September 1917 – 23 March 1926

  Kuomintang (Nationalist)

Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term of Office Political Party
1 Sunyatsen1.jpg Sun Yat-sen
孫文
Sun Yat-sen
(1866–1925)
10 September 1917 10 May 1919 Kuomintang
2 March 1923 12 March 1925
Generalissimo. Created the First United Front. Died in office. After his death, Chiang Kai-shek becomes the de facto head of state
2 Hhm.png Hu Hanmin
胡漢民
Hú Hànmín
(1879–1936)
12 March 1925 12 July 1925 Kuomintang
Office claimed by Tang Jiyao; main article: Yunnan–Guangxi War. The Nationalist Government was created in 1925, July 1
3 七一五之前的汪兆銘.jpg Wang Jingwei
汪精衛
Wāng Jīngwèi
(1883–1944)
12 July 1925 23 March 1926 Kuomintang
Vacant office (de jure) until 1928

Chairmen of the Nationalist Government[edit]

  • Period: 7 February 1928 – 20 May 1948

  Kuomintang (Nationalist)

The head of state of the Nationalist Government (國民政府) in this period (political tutelage,  訓政時期).

Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term of Office Political Party Vice President
1 Tan Yankai.png Tan Yankai
譚延闓
Tán Yánkǎi
(1880–1930)
7 February 1928 10 October 1928 Kuomintang vacant
2 Chiang Kai-shek enhanced.jpg Chiang Kai-shek
蔣中正
Jiǎng Zhōngzhèng
(1887–1975)
10 October 1928 15 December 1931 Kuomintang vacant
3 Lin Sen.jpg Lin Sen
林森
Lín Sēn
(1868–1943)
15 December 1931 1 August 1943 Kuomintang vacant
Died in office.
4 Chiang Kai-shek enhanced.jpg Chiang Kai-shek
蔣中正
Jiǎng Zhōngzhèng
(1887–1975)
1 August 1943 20 May 1948 Kuomintang vacant

President of the Fujian People's Government[edit]

  • Period: 22 November 1933 – 16 January 1934


Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term of Office Political Party
1 Li Jishen.jpg Li Jishen
李濟深
Lǐ Jìshēn
(1885–1959)
22 November 1933 16 January 1934 Productive People's Party
Former member of the Kuomintang

Chairmen of the Nanjing Nationalist Government[edit]

  • Period: 30 March 1940 – 10 August 1945

  Kuomintang (Nationalist, Wang Jingwei's faction)

Heads of state of the Reorganized National Government of the Republic of China, a collaborationist puppet state established by Imperial Japan. It existed from 1940 to 1945, and claimed to be the legitimate successor to Sun Yat-sen, rather than the government of Chiang Kai-shek.

Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term of Office Political Party Vice President
1 Wang Jingwei 1.JPG Wang Jingwei
汪精衛
Wāng Jīngwèi
(1883–1944)
30 March 1940 10 November 1944 Kuomintang Zhou Fohai
Died in office.
2 Chen Gong-bo Mayor Shanghai 1943.jpg Chen Gongbo
陳公博
Chén Gōngbó
(1892–1946)
September 1944 10 August 1945 Kuomintang Zhou Fohai
Acting from September to November 1944.

Lists of Presidents after the 1947 Constitution[edit]

Presidents elected by the National Assembly[edit]

  • Period: 20 May 1948 – 20 May 1996

  Kuomintang (Nationalist)

In the fall of 1949 the ROC government retreated to Taiwan and surrounding islands as a result of the takeover of China by the People's Republic of China. The capital was moved to Taipei. Martial law was ended in Taiwan in the 1980s and direct elections were introduced in 1996.

Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term of Office Term Elections Political Party Vice President
1 Chiang Kai-shek enhanced.jpg Chiang Kai-shek
蔣中正
Jiǎng Zhōngzhèng
(1887–1975)
20 May 1948 21 January 1949 1 1948 (90.03%) Kuomintang Li Zongren
Declared incapacity to discharge duties and powers as President following a succession of defeats by the Communists in the Chinese Civil War.
Lizhongren.jpg Li Zongren
李宗仁
Lǐ Zōngrén
(1890–1969)
21 January 1949 1 March 1950 1 Kuomintang Vacant
Acting President on Chiang Kai-shek's declaration of incapacity. Had an antagonistic relationship with Chiang. After the fall of Guangdong, Li flew to New York.
Yan Xishan.jpg Yan Xishan
閻錫山
Yán xíshān
(1883–1960)
20 November 1949 1 March 1950 1 Kuomintang Vacant
After Li fled to New York, Premier Yan became acting president according to Article 49 of Constitution. 1 March 1950, Chiang re-assumed the presidency, but Li Zongren denounced Chiang's re-assumption as unconstitutional.
1 Chiang Kai-shek enhanced.jpg Chiang Kai-shek
蔣中正
Jiǎng Zhōngzhèng
(1887–1975)
1 March 1950 20 May 1954 1 Kuomintang Li Zongren (1950–1954[3])
Vacant (1954)
20 May 1954 20 May 1960 2 1954 (96.91%) Chen Cheng
20 May 1960 20 May 1966 3 1960 (93.97%) Chen Cheng (1960–1965[4])
Vacant (1965–1966)
20 May 1966 20 May 1972 4 1966 (98.60%) Yen Chia-kan
20 May 1972 5 April 1975 5 1972 (99.39%) Yen Chia-kan
Defeated on the mainland; moved the government to Taipei. Resumed office on 1 March 1950. Imposed martial law under the Temporary Provisions Effective During the Period of Communist Rebellion; period of white terror. Implemented sweeping land reforms. Died in office.
2 Yen Chia-kan 1965.jpg Yen Chia-kan
(C.K. Yen)

嚴家淦
Yán Jiāgàn
(1905–1993)
6 April 1975 20 May 1978 5 Kuomintang Vacant
Premier (1963–1972). As Vice-President under Chiang Kai-shek, Yan succeeded to the Presidency on Chiang's death and completed Chiang's term.
3 Chiang Ching-Kuo in 1954.png Chiang Ching-kuo
蔣經國
Jiǎng Jīngguó
(1910–1988)
20 May 1978 20 May 1984 6 1978 (98.34%) Kuomintang Hsieh Tung-min
20 May 1984 13 January 1988 7 1984 (95.11%) Lee Teng-hui
Son of Chiang Kai-shek. Oversaw completion of the Ten Major Construction Projects and economic modernization of Taiwan (Taiwan miracle). Presided at time of growing democratic movements (Kaohsiung Incident); ended martial law. Died in office.
4 Lee Teng-hui photo.jpg Lee Teng-hui
李登輝
Lǐ Dēnghuī
(1923–)
13 January 1988 20 May 1990 7 Kuomintang Vacant
20 May 1990 20 May 1996 8 1990 (85.24%) Li Yuan-zu
As Vice President (1984–1988) under Chiang Ching-kuo, Lee succeeded to the Presidency on Chiang's death and completed Chiang's term. Oversaw democratic reforms. Served as Mayor of Taipei (1978–1981), Governor of Taiwan Province (1981–1984), Chairman of Kuomintang (1988–2000). First native Taiwanese President.

Presidents after the introduction of Direct Election[edit]

  • Period: 20 May 1996 – present

  Kuomintang (Nationalist)   Democratic Progressive

Portrait Name
(Birth–Death)
Term of Office Term Electoral mandates Political Party Vice President
4 Lee Teng-hui photo.jpg Lee Teng-hui
李登輝
Lǐ Dēnghuī
(1923–)
20 May 1996 20 May 2000 9 1996 5,813,699 (54.0%) Kuomintang Lien Chan
First president elected by direct election. Term saw the manifestation of "black gold" politics within the KMT. Cross-strait tensions over promotion of "special state-to-state relations" with mainland China.
5 2000-ele-Chen-CC4.png Chen Shui-bian
陳水扁
Chén Shuǐbiǎn
(1950–)
20 May 2000 20 May 2004 10 2000 4,977,737 (39.3%) Democratic Progressive Party Annette Lu
20 May 2004 20 May 2008 11 2004 6,446,900 (50.11%)
First Pan-Green and pro-Taiwan independence President. Promoted Taiwanization policies; increased cross strait tensions due to pro-independence stance. Abruptly halted construction of the Number Four Nuclear Power Facility, leading to antagonistic relations with the opposition. Served as Member of the Legislative Yuan for Taipei 1st District (1990–1994), Mayor of Taipei (1994–1998) and Chairman of DPP (2002–2004, 2007–2008). Sentenced to imprisonment for corruption.
6 中華民國第12、13任總統馬英九先生官方肖像照.jpg Ma Ying-jeou
馬英九
Mǎ Yīngjiǔ
(1950–)
20 May 2008 20 May 2012 12 2008 7,658,724 (58.45%) Kuomintang Vincent Siew
20 May 2012 20 May 2016 13 2012 6,891,139 (51.60%) Wu Den-yih
Led efforts to ease cross strait tensions; oversaw the opening of the Three Links to mainland China and the signing of the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement. First president to meet with the paramount leader of the People's Republic of China since the end of the Chinese Civil War in 1949. Attempt to pass the Cross-Strait Service Trade Agreement led to mass student protests and an occupation of the legislature. Served as Minister of Justice (1993–1996), Mayor of Taipei (1998–2006), Chairman of Kuomintang (2005–2007, 2009–2014). First administration with a DPP majority (2016) in the Legislative Yuan.
7 蔡英文官方元首肖像照.png Tsai Ing-wen
蔡英文
Cài Yīngwén
(1956–)
20 May 2016 Incumbent 14 2016 6,894,744 (56.1%) Democratic Progressive Party Chen Chien-jen
Vice Premier (2006–2007), Chairman of DPP (2008–2012, 2014–). First female President, first President of Aboriginal descent (1/4 Paiwan), first administration with DPP controlling both executive and legislative branches, first elected president without having previously served as Taipei mayor.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Restored the monarchy from 12 December 1915 to 22 March 1916.
  2. ^ Zhang Xun restored Qing Empire from 1 July to 12 July in 1917.
  3. ^ Impeached, recalled in 1954.
  4. ^ Chen Cheng, Died on 5 March 1965.