■ Banks raise interest rates \n \nOne day after the largest state-run bank, Bank of Taiwan (台銀), raised its interest rates, two major state-run counterparts -- Land Bank of Taiwan (土銀) and Taiwan Cooperative Bank (合作金庫) -- followed suit yesterday. The Land Bank raised its interest rates by between 0.075 of a percentage point and 0.125 of a percentage point. Taiwan Cooperative Bank also raised its interest rates by between 0.05 of a percentage point and 0.125 of a percentage point. \n■ CPC seeks foreign oil supplier \n \nChinese Petroleum Corp (中油) said it's seeking to buy 270,000 barrels of Indonesia's Duri crude oil or China's Qinghuangdao crude oil for loading or delivery in November. Chinese Petroleum wants potential suppliers to submit offers by today, the company said in an e-mail. Offers should be valid until tomorrow. Suppliers should offer to sell the cargo based on the Indonesian Crude Price of Duri crude oil, the company said. Duri and Qinghuangdao are low-sulfur crude oil with less than 0.5 percent sulfur by weight. \n■ Oil production to be boosted \n \nThe nation's second largest oil refiner Formosa Petrochemical Corp (台塑石化) plans to invest NT$10 billion (US$290 million) to boost oil refinery capacity at its Miaoli County plants, it was reported yesterday. Formosa Petrochemical, a subsidiary of Formosa Plastics Group (台塑集團), operates three refineries in Miaoli with daily production of 450,000 barrels. This would be increased to 600,000 barrels in 2006 after the expansion project is completed, a Chinese-language newspaper quoted company president Wang Wen-chao (王文潮) as saying. The company has projected 2004 sales at NT$283.8 billion and net profit at NT$27.5 billion, the report said. \n■ FSC touts competitiveness \n \nThe Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) will do everything it can to maintain the nation's financial stability and competitiveness, commission Chairman Kong Jaw-sheng (龔照勝) said yesterday. At a meeting of the Legislative Yuan's Finance Committee, Kong gave an outline of the commission's work in the future, which includes the establishment of a regional financial service center, encouraging mergers among financial institutions, reinforcing financial supervision and promoting international cooperation in financial supervision. With regards to mergers among banks, Kong said the commission will limit the establishment of financial institutions and give high marks to those mergers that operate well. \n■ Business forum gains steam \n \nCalifornia Lieutenant-Governor Cruz Bustamante confirmed Tuesday that a California-Taiwan business forum organized by private businesses will soon begin operations in Taipei. Bustamante, who concurrently serves as chairman of the California Commission for Economic Development, noted that there was formerly a California trade office in the Taipei World Trade Center, but it closed due to an insufficient budget during the tenure of former governor Gray Davis. He pointed out that the business forum will help California businessmen solicit business opportunities in Taiwan, attend major exhibitions and provide services to Taiwan businessmen interested in opportunities in California. \n■ NT dollar declines \n \nThe New Taiwan dollar declined against the US dollar on the Taipei Foreign Exchange yesterday, losing NT$0.001 to close at NT$33.919. A total of US$730 million changed hands during the day's trading.
DEVELOPING TALENT: The electronics contractor is looking to recruit people to work in core tech fields and emerging industries like electric cars and robotics Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密), the world’s largest contract electronics maker, has launched a recruitment drive, offering a monthly salary of no less than NT$45,000 (US$1,485) to university graduates. For those with a master’s degree, the starting pay would be NT$52,000 per month at the minimum, while doctorate degree holders would receive at least NT$60,000 a month, Hon Hai said a statement issued early this week. The latest recruitment drive is aimed at attracting talent in core technology fields — artificial intelligence, semiconductors and next-generation mobile communications — and emerging industries — electric vehicles, digital healthcare and robotics, the
MRT TRAVEL FALLS: In February, ridership on the Taipei MRT System fell 8.96 percent from an average of 2.01 million per day in January Scooter sales jumped 13 percent last month as more commuters turned to two-wheelers to avoid public transportation amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the latest statistics showed. Sales expanded to 74,493 units last month, compared with 65,913 units in February, statistics released on Wednesday by Kwang Yang Motor Co (光陽工業) and the Ministry of Transportation and Communications showed. In the first quarter, aggregate sales slid 0.51 percent year-over-year to 186,627 units, from 187,580 units, data showed. Kwang Yang, the nation’s biggest scooter manufacturer, continued to lead the market by selling 24,136 vehicles last month, growing 6.12 percent from 20,785 units in the previous month, while
Asustek Computer Inc (華碩), the nation’s leading PC vendor, yesterday launched its first dual-screen gaming laptop powered by Intel Corp’s latest central processing units (CPUs). The PC manufacturer’s announcement closely followed the US chipmaker’s unveiling of its 10th Generation Core H-series, the fastest commercial mobile processors with speeds of up to 5 gigahertz. Although Asustek’s Zephyrus Duo 15, the highlight of its Republic of Gamers line, is not the company’s first laptop with two screens, it is its first designed specifically for gaming. Nestled between the primary display panel and the keyboard, the secondary display, which Asustek calls the ScreenPad Plus, is angled
NO ILL EFFECT: Last month’s data mainly reflected deals made in February, when the spread of COVID-19 was still relatively mild in Taiwan, housing brokers said Housing transactions in the six special municipalities totaled 19,824 units last month, up 7.8 percent from a year earlier, brokers said, citing government data. Last month’s data mainly reflected deals made in February, when the pinch of the COVID-19 pandemic was not yet evident, they said. Taoyuan posted the largest improvement, with housing transactions soaring 36.6 percent year-on-year to 3,676 units, local government data showed. Taiwan Realty Co (台灣房屋) attributed the pickup to the completion of two presale residential projects in the municipality. Houses in Taoyuan have increasingly gained in popularity in the past few year years due to relatively affordable home prices and