■ Foreign exchange reserves up
Taiwan's foreign exchange reserves totalled US$253.29 billion at the end of December, up from US$251.78 billion a month earlier, the central bank said. In addition to foreign capital inflows and returns from foreign exchange reserves management, the increase reflects the appreciation of the euro and the yen against the US dollar, the Bank said.
■ Powerchip promised land
The Ministry of Economic Affairs will help Powerchip Semiconductor Corp (力晶) obtain land in Taiwan for expansion, urging the company not to invest in China, said Minister Ho Mei-yueh. Powerchip and ProMOS Technologies Inc (茂德) have applied for approval to build plants in China to make eight-inch wafers. The government failed to keep its previous commitment to allow two more semiconductor makers to invest in China by the end of last year.
■ Taipower expects losses
The state-run Taiwan Power Co (Taipower, 台電) is estimated to post a deficit of more than NT$20 billion (US$618.42 million) in 2006 owing to the rise in oil prices, company chairman Morgan Hwang (黃營杉) said on Wednesday. According to the company's budget proposal that has been submitted to the legislature for review, the company's income and expenditure in 2006 are projected to amount to NT$382.79 billion and NT$400.81 billion, respectively, with the gross loss expected to amount to NT$18.02 billion. However, Huang said actual losses this year are likely to top NT$20 billion, because of rising oil prices.