Sat, Oct 13, 2007 - Page 12 News List

Formosa Plastics to spend NT$706.8bn over next five years

STAFF WRITER , WITH AFP

Formosa Plastics Group (台塑集團) yesterday proposed NT$706.8 billion (US$21.7 billion) in investments in Taiwan over the next five years.

The projects include an expansion of its petrochemical complex in central Taiwan, a steel mill and two 12-inch wafer plants, a company official said.

"To my knowledge, we have briefed the Ministry of Economic Affairs about the investment proposal to seek government assistance in clearing investment barriers," the official said.

The group is facing strong opposition from environmentalists to the planned steel mill, he said.

The official also said that various overseas projects totaling some NT$76 billion are also planned.

He did not elaborate, but local media reports said the investments abroad might include a stainless steel complex in China worth more than US$100 million.

Bentham Hung (洪永聰), managing director of US-based Mega Wealth International Management Consultant, said the massive investment projects indicated Formosa Plastics group's determination to diversify.

"Apart from the petrochemical business, the group has entered the high tech turf," Hung said.

"The two planned 12-inch wafer plants, which are expected to account for more than half of the 706.8 billion dollar investments, are evidence of the group's ambition," he said.

"I believe Formosa group came up with such an investment proposal after careful deliberation," he said.

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