Washington's stance and policies on Taiwan are unlikely to change significantly regardless of who wins the island’s presidential and legislative elections on Saturday, a former director of the United States’ de facto embassy in Taiwan has told The Japan Times.

Douglas H. Paal, who headed the American Institute of Taiwan (AIT) from 2002 to 2006, said in an interview that, regardless of whether the ruling Democratic People's Party (DPP), the main opposition Kuomintang (KMT) or the “middle-ground” Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) win the vote, any differences in Washington's reaction would be "nuanced," and rather involve "adjustments in degree than in type.”

“Overall, support for Taiwan runs deep in both major U.S. parties, and I doubt that will change very much,” said Paal, who is currently a distinguished fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.