Tue, Nov 18, 2003 - Page 11 News List

Business Briefs


ICBC seeks Shanghai partner

Taiwan's International Commercial Bank of China (ICBC, 國際商銀) is seeking strategic partnership with Shanghai-based First Sino Bank to expand its presence in China, a newspaper reported Monday.

Negotiations were being made for the signing of a memorandum of understanding between ICBC, a subsidiary of Mega Financial Holding Co (兆豐金控) and First Sino Bank, the newspaper said.

Mega Financial hoped the partnership could help integrate ICBC's resources to develop investment banking businesses in mainland China, it added.

"We are unable to comment on such an issue," an ICBC official said.

ICBC has received approval from Taiwan's finance ministry to open a representative office in China's southeastern city of Suzhou, near Shanghai, and is waiting clearance from the Chinese authorities for the operation.

UK delegation in Taiwan

A delegation of eight senior executives from six UK companies arrived in Taiwan yesterday for a four-day trip to explore trade and investment opportunities with local business organizations, potential partners, agents, and importers, the British Trade and Cultural Office said in a statement.

The products and services represented on the trade mission include sterilizing machines which are used in healthcare, laboratories and laundry finishing equipment, gearboxes and geared motors, extrusion machines and cold weld equipment for non ferrous metals, visual stimulus generators for vision scientists and related equipment, light trackers and video eyetrackers, fast food chain advisory services to overseas companies, and security services for the port, maritime, rail and logistics industries.

China expects 8.7% growth

China's economy may expand 8.7 percent this year and 9.5 percent next year, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said in a report, which also raised growth estimates for Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore.

China's gross domestic product was previously forecast to gain 8.1 percent in 2003 and 8.4 percent next year, the US brokerage said in its research report published today.

The economies of Taiwan and Singapore may expand 5.8 percent next year while South Korea and Hong Kong may grow 6 percent, Goldman Sachs predicted.

Before today's report, Goldman Sachs forecast Taiwan would expand 5 percent next year, Singapore would grow 4.5 percent, South Korea would accelerate to 5 percent and Hong Kong would expand 5.4 percent.

Yuan to keep stable

China's yuan exchange rate mechanism should be kept stable ``for a long term'', the country's foreign exchange regulator said in a statement on its Web site.

``To keep the exchange rate basically stable not only helps China to maintain steady economic growth, but also conforms to the interests of the Asian-Pacific countries and others,'' the State Administration of Foreign Exchange said.

China, which pegs its currency at about 8.3 to the US dollar, is under external pressure to let the yuan appreciate.

NT dollar falls

The Taiwan dollar weakened after the yen and South Korean won dropped, spurring concern the island's central bank will sell to help protect exporters in competition with neighboring countries.

The NT dollar fell 0.1 percent to NT$34.018 from Friday's NT$33.984, according to Taipei Forex Inc.

A rising NT dollar may raise export prices in US currency terms but make it more difficult for the government to achieve its economic growth forecast.

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