Fri, Nov 21, 2003 - Page 11 News List

Business Briefs

AGENCIES

Taiwan invests more in China

Taiwanese companies' investment in China rose 17 percent in the first 10 months of this year as the nation's manufacturers built more plants across the Taiwan Strait to take advantage of cheaper labor and tap rising demand. Taiwanese companies' approved investment in China rose to US$3.56 billion from US$3.03 billion a year earlier, the Investment Commission said on its Web site. Foreign investment in Taiwan, by contrast, dropped 8.5 percent to US$2.46 billion. Last month alone, Taiwanese companies' investment fell 13 percent to US$304 million after climbing 65 percent in September. Foreign investment in Taiwan dropped 34 percent to US$270 million last month, the report said.

Kaohsiung fifth-largest port

Container shipping through Kaohsiung totaled 8.49 million TEUs last year, making it the world's fifth-largest container-shipping harbor. According to the Review of Maritime Transport 2003 released by the UMN Conference on Trade and Development, Hong Kong remained the world's largest container-shipping harbor last year, followed in order by Singapore, Pusan, Shanghai, Kaohsiung and Shenzhen.

HannStar wins flat-panel orders
Dell Inc and Hewlett-Packard Co have placed orders with HannStar Display Corp (瀚宇彩晶) to buy flat-panel displays used in personal computers and televisions, a Chinese-language newspaper said, without saying where it obtained the information. Dell and Hewlett-Packard plan to buy 4 million flat panels from HannStar, accounting for 40 percent of the Taiwanese maker's production next year, the report said. Taiwanese manufacturers such as HannStar and Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd (中華映管) are raising prices amid strong demand, the paper said. Chunghwa Picture Tubes, the third-largest maker of flat-panel displays in the country, plans to raise prices of 15-inch and 17-inch panels by US$5 to US$10 each, the report said.

Formosa to expand production

Formosa Plastics Corp (台塑), plans to invest NT$4.4 billion (US$129 million) to expand caustic-soda production almost sixfold to become the world's third-biggest manufacturer of a material used to make paper and other products. Asahi Kasei Corp, Japan's second-biggest chemicals maker, and Krupp Uhde GmbH, a unit of Germany's largest steelmaker, will contribute technology to the expansion, Formosa Plastics spokesman Jerry Lin said in a phone interview. Formosa Plastics, Taiwan's biggest maker of polyvinyl chloride used in pipes, will increase soda capacity to 2.3 million metric tonnes from a combined 400,000 tonnes currently at two factories in Taiwan.

ASE seeks funds overseas

Advanced Semiconductor Engineering Inc (日月光), the world's second-largest packager of computer chips, may raise about US$441 million selling shares and bonds overseas to fund expansion and pay loans as demand rebounds. Directors approved the sale of as many as 300 million new shares as depositary receipts, worth NT$9.9 billion (US$291 million) at Wednesday's closing price, and as much as US$150 million of bonds convertible into shares, the company said in a statement.

NT dollar weakens

The New Taiwan dollar yesterday turned weak against its US counterpart, losing NT$0.023 to close at NT$34.027 on the Taipei foreign exchange market. Turnover was US$645 million.

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