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2018 machinery output hits new high
Focus Taiwan Nina Lin (ninalin@taitra.org.tw)
 The production value of Taiwan’s machinery industry rose to a new high in 2018 on the back of government efforts to push for smart machinery development, according to the Executive Yuan.

Cabinet spokesperson Kolas Yotaka told the press after a Thursday Cabinet meeting that the output of the local machinery sector rose 7.3 percent from a year earlier to US$38.25 billion in 2018.

According to Kolas, Premier Su Tseng-chang said in the meeting on Taiwan’s machinery development that the government aims at upgrading the country’s precision machinery development into smart machinery capability, which is expected to transform the country into a production hub of global smart machinery and sophisticated components.

Since the Democratic Progressive Party came to power in May 2016, the government has pushed for its initiatives on the “5 plus 2” industries to reform Taiwan’s economic and industrial structure.

Biotech-related projects, Green energy, Smart Machinery, the Defense Industry, New Agriculture and Circular Economy

The economic initiatives refer to programs aimed at developing an “Asian Silicon Valley,” biotech-related projects, green energy, smart machinery, the defense industry, new agriculture and circular economy.

Su said in the meeting that he will ask the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to instruct the ministry’s overseas offices to provide assistance to Taiwanese machinery firms when they participate in international trade shows, which is expected to help them enter the global supply chain as a team effort, so that Taiwanese machinery firms will not have to act on their own, according to Kolas.

Su said international cooperation for the local machinery sector will target the countries under the government’s “New Southbound policy,” a crown jewel policy launched by the Tsai Ing-wen administration to forge closer ties with 18 countries, including the 10 members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, India, New Zealand and Australia, in order to reduce Taiwan’s economic dependence on China.

The premier, Kolas said, will continue to coordinate Cabinet resources to push for cooperation between the local machinery industry and academia to cultivate a talent pool, while the government will maintain its efforts to help small and medium-sized machinery makers upgrade to take on competition, according to Kolas.

In a report presented by the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) to the Cabinet meeting, the ministry said it has provided assistance in smart production to a total of 58 small and medium-sized firms here for technology upgrades, help that has led these firms to invest NT$855 million to speed up the pace of industrial transformation.

The MOEA also said that through its assistance, some local smart machinery makers have successfully sold their solutions to Southeast Asian countries such as Thailand and Malaysia, and the ministry has plans to help them explore the U.S., European and Japanese markets.

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