Thu, Aug 21, 2003 - Page 11 News List

Business Briefs

STAFF WRITER WITH AGENCIES

China-bound investment rises

The government has approved a total of 1,092 applications for China-bound investment worth US$2.54 billion in the first seven months of the year, up 31 percent from a year earlier, the Investment Commission said yesterday in a statement.

The electronics and electrical sector accounted for 23.89 percent of the applications while 9.93 percent were for the base metal sector, the commission said. Chemicals accounted for 8.35 percent and the precision machinery sector 6.51 percent. Almost half of the investments, 44 percent, are intended for Jiangsu Province.

In the seven-month period, the commission approved 455 non-China bound investment applications worth US$1.95 billion, up 6.51 percent from the same period last year. The commission approved 601 inbound investment applications during the same period worth US$1.51 billion, down 17.67 percent year-on-year, it said.

Current account surplus grows

The nation's current-account surplus widened in the second quarter as investment income rose and fewer people traveled overseas during the SARS outbreak.

The surplus widened to US$6.58 billion from US$5.79 billion a year earlier, the central bank said in a statement.

The income surplus increased to US$2.4 billion from US$1.59 billion, the bank said. The deficit on the services account narrowed to US$859 million from US$1.11 billion.

The trade surplus narrowed to US$5.68 billion from US$5.95 billion. Taiwan's financial account turned to a deficit of US$2.09 billion from a surplus of US$10.9 billion as fund managers in the country invested more money in foreign stocks and bonds, the bank said.

Growth forecasted for chips

The worldwide semiconductor market will grow 11.2 percent this year compared to last year due to increasing demand, US-based research firm Gartner Inc predicted on Tuesday.

Last year the global semiconductor industry made US$156 billion in sales revenue. Gartner forecast Tuesday that the figure will reach US$173 billion this year.

"Noteworthy improvements in market conditions during the last few weeks confirm that the industry is continuing its recovery as expected and is about to enter a more accelerated growth phase," said Richard Gordon, vice president for Gartner's semiconductor research group, in a statement.

"While many industry watchers have been revising down their forecasts recently, we have been predicting growth of around 10 percent for 2003 since the fourth quarter of last year," he said.

Chinatrust sets swap offer

Chinatrust Financial Holding Co (中信金控) is offering shareholders 0.633 preference shares and 0.254 common shares for each Grand Commercial Bank (萬通銀行) share in its attempted takeover of the lender controlled by the nation's largest food company.

Grand Commercial will issue 407.5 million new shares to facilitate the offer, Michael Jong (鍾隆吉), vice chairman of the financial arm of the Koos Group (和信集團), said after a shareholder meeting yesterday.

NT dollar hits one-year high

The NT dollar had its highest close in almost a year yesterday on trader expectations of growing currency demand by overseas investors.

The NT dollar gained 0.2 percent to NT$34.298 against its US counterpart, its strongest close since Sept. 9 last year. Turnover was US$615 million.

International fund managers on Tuesday purchased a net NT$11.6 billion (US$338 million) of Taiwanese stocks, the most since May 29, according to Bloomberg data.

This story has been viewed 2792 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top