Taiwan names new defence minister Kao Kuang-chi, no major change in defence policy

TAIPEI (Reuters) - Taiwan on Tuesday appointed a new defence minister and indicated military policy would remain unchanged after the previous minister, Yen Ming, resigned for personal reasons.

Kao Kuang-chi, the Ministry of National Defence's chief of the general staff, was named minister, with effective from Friday, the Presidential Office said in a statement.

US-ally Taiwan and mainland China have been at odds for decades. The mainland regards Taiwan as a breakaway province and has never renounced the use of force to take over the island, particularly if it pursues independence.

Taiwan's military preparedness is expected to continue under Kao's leadership, the office said. "It will not cause any concerns or problems regarding the promotion of defense policy," ministry spokesman Major-General David Lo said of the change.

Kao is a longtime officer having served in the ministry's strategic planning and armaments departments. He was also a navy commander.