Thu, Dec 26, 2002 - Page 11 News List

Business briefs

STAFF WRITER, WITH AGENCIES

Taiwan host to 96 multinationals

A total of 96 multinational enterprises have established operation centers in Taiwan and the number is estimated to rise to 600 by 2007, with a total investment of NT$1.25 trillion, Ho Mei-yueh (何美玥), vice chairwoman of the Cabinet-level Council for Economic Planning and Development, told lawmakers Tuesday.

Multinationals with revenues of more than NT$1 billion from their operations in Taiwan and which employ a monthly average of not less than 100 employees, while their overseas subsidiaries have revenues of more than NT$100 million, are qualified to apply to establish an operations center in Taiwan, Ho said.

If the target set for 2007 is achieved, the operation centers will create annual revenues of NT$743 billion and create 87,000 job opportunities, Ho predicted.

Money supply rose last month

Taiwan's money supply rose 2.86 percent in November from a year earlier, reversing six months of deceleration, as foreign capital inflow increased and gains in foreign exchange proceeds from overseas sales.

M2, the broadest measure of money supply, rose 2.86 percent from a year earlier, following a 2.52-percent increase in October, the central bank said in a statement. M2 measures currency in circulation, checking and savings accounts, and money-market funds.

Export orders increasing

The continued growth of export orders may help boost the nation's gross domestic product growth rate this year, an official at the Ministry of Economic Affairs said yesterday.

Taiwan registered US$13.42 billion worth of export orders in November, an increase of 13.83 percent from a year earlier and the eighth consecutive month of double-digit growth, the ministry reported Tuesday.

Chang Yaw-tzong (張耀宗), director-general of the ministry's statistics department, said that the economic growth rate of 3.27 percent this year forecast by the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) still has room for upward adjustment, due to the increase in export orders.

China may miss wheat target

China's wheat imports next year will probably fall short of the target pledged to the World Trade Organization as the government uses reserves to meet demand in the world's biggest grain market.

China's wheat imports in 2003 probably won't exceed the estimated 700,000 metric tons the government expects to import for this year, the trade ministry said in a report.

China this year pledged to import 8.5 million tons of wheat at a 1 percent preferential tariff rate. The import target will rise to 9.1 million tons next year.

Formosa to set up plant in China

Formosa Plastics Group (台塑集團) plans to set up a tire plant in China at a cost of NT$2 billion (US$57.4 million), it was reported yesterday.

The plant would produce up to 20,000 tires a day to meet demand from the group's wholly-owned Formosa Automobile Corp (台塑汽車), which is expected to set up a joint venture with General Motors Taiwan next year, a local newspaper said.

Formosa Automobile produces two Daewoo Motor-designed models in Taiwan.

NT dollar down slightly

The New Taiwan dollar yesterday continued to lose ground against its US counterpart amid light trading, falling NT$0.02 to close at NT$34.85 on the Taipei foreign exchange market.

Turnover was US$134 million, compared with the previous day's US$297 million.

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