Mon, Nov 13, 2006 - Page 12 News List

Private investment picking up in second half: CEPD

STAFF WRITER , WITH CNA

Despite declines in the first half of the year, private investment has picked up steam in the second half and is expected to achieve positive growth for the whole year, a government source forecast yesterday.

Council for Economic Planning and Development (CEPD) Chairman Hu Sheng-cheng (胡勝正) quoted tallies compiled by the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) as indicating that private investment declined 3.89 percent year-on-year for the January to June period, mainly as a result of spiraling crude oil prices.

However, private investment has rebounded from the beginning of the second half of the year, mainly as a result of rising production in the semiconductor industry, Hu said.

Hu quoted the DGBAS tallies as forecasting that private investment would expand 5 percent for the July to December period and rise 0.53 percent for the entire year.

Quoting a survey conducted by the Ministry of Economic Affairs last month, Hu said that 28.1 percent of Taiwanese companies have increased domestic investment this year or plan to do so, up 5.1 percentage points over the figure posted in a similar survey in October last year.

Meanwhile, based on the ministry's statistics, foreign investment totaled US$10.7 billion for the first 10 months of this year, marking a new record high for the period, Hu said.

Hu discounted a local newspaper report yesterday that private investment has declined because of a string of corruption allegations involving the president, his family and top aides as well as a decline in administrative efficiency due to constant political wrangling.

He said graft allegations involving the president and his family are only "isolated cases," adding that how the domestic economy performs will hinge largely on the legislature's decisions and performance on economic issues.

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