Fri, Aug 27, 2004 - Page 10 News List

Export orders hit new record high on electronics demand

AP

Export orders hit a record high in July, spurred by strong demand for the nation's electronics products, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said yesterday.

Export orders rose 27.83 percent to US$18.54 billion (NT$630 billion) last month, the highest value for any month on record, the ministry said. The increase was also faster than the 28 percent gain to US$17.7 billion (NT$601 billion) in June.

The July figure was higher than the previous export orders record of US$18.03 billion (NT$613 billion) in April.

Strong demand for electronics, particularly semiconductors and LCD screens, led the growth.

Industrial output last month rose 9.51 percent on year on increased manufacturing and new construction, slowing from a revised 15.99 percent gain in June, the government said.

Export orders hit a new high in July as the electronics sourcing season heated up. July through October is typically the year's best period for electronics parts makers, since Western firms need to stock up ahead of back-to-school and holiday sales.

"It's possible that we'll see new records in September or October for export orders," said Chang Yaw-tzong (張耀宗), the ministry's top statistician. However, he warned that growth rates will likely lose momentum due to a higher comparison base in the second half of last year.

The strongest orders for Taiwan's export products in July came from the US, Hong Kong and China, the government said, noting rising steel prices also boosted export order growth in July.

US orders totaled US$5.35 billion (NT$181 billion), up 32.41 percent on year. Hong Kong placed US$4.3 billion (NT$146.2 billion) in orders, up 25.7 percent on year. Orders from Europe rose 37.92 percent on year to US$2.75 billion (NT$93.5 billion), while those from Japan increased 16.03 percent to US$1.92 billion (NT$65 billion).

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