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Published on : Sunday, December 1, 2013
The number of foreign firms with regional headquarters in Taiwan is expected to jump 50 percent to 300 by 2015 as part of ROC government efforts to transform the country into an Asia-Pacific business hub, according to the Ministry of Economic Affairs Nov. 19.
“At least 200 overseas companies have their regional headquarters in Taiwan,” MOEA Minister Chang Chia-juch said. “They are planning an estimated NT$62.6 billion (US2.12 billion) in investment that is expected to create nearly 11,000 new job openings over the next three years.
“These numbers are set to increase as more multinationals come to recognize the merits of Taiwan’s thriving business climate and unique structural advantages.”
Chang made the remarks during a presentation showcasing the results of MOEA undertakings to date in this regard. The event was attended by representatives from 15 foreign firms based in Germany, France, Japan and the U.S.
The minister said regional headquarters are important drivers of the local private sector as they spur innovation in branding know-how, market expansion strategies, processing technologies and product design.
“Taiwan’s economic and logistical strengths make it an ideal choice for foreign firms,” Chang said, adding that these include world-class manufacturing and R&D capabilities, proximity to mainland China, quality human resources and unparalleled clusters of industry supply chains.
Citing the latest MOEA statistics, the minister said 58 percent of foreign companies operating in Taiwan are looking to expand their businesses in the next three years, up from 45 percent in 2011 and 46 percent in 2012.
Takashi Wada, an executive with Tokyo-based Nippon Express Co. Ltd., said his company set up a regional distribution and logistics center in Taiwan mainly because the country is less than three hours away by air from seven major cities in the region.
Wada also said Taiwan’s Free Economic Pilot Zones, and the fact that Taiwan and mainland China share the same culture and language, are other reasons for his firm’s decision.
German conglomerate Merck KGaA, the world’s leading supplier of liquid-crystal materials, elected to capitalize on Taiwan’s expertise in display-panel production, establishing its first R&D center in Asia. U.S. information technology outfit Hewlett-Packard Co. also bases its global computing hub on the island.
“The MOEA will continue introducing measures and regulatory easing to strengthen Taiwan’s competitive edge and promote the country as a regional center for international firms in business intelligence, knowledge, production, pilot programs and talent training going forward,” Chang said.