China Steel Corp (中鋼) is making new investments in clean energy and biotechnology as part of a strategy to diversify its business portfolio.
The Greater Kaohsiung-based company said yesterday its board had agreed to spend NT$500 million (US$17.33 million) for a 33 percent stake in a planned venture capital company, which will focus on green energy and biotech investments.
China Steel said in an e-mailed statement that the planned venture capital company would have an initial paid-in capital of NT$1.5 billion, with other shareholders including the government’s National Development Fund (國發基金) and several local businesses.
The government fund is a NT$200 billion public venture capital fund aimed at assisting companies in strategic industries.
China Steel, the nation’s largest steelmaker, has in recent years focused on the development of high-intensity steel products used for vehicles and in construction that can help reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
Separately, more than 100 members of the union at shipbuilder CSBC Corp, Taiwan (台灣國際造船) yesterday held a protest outside China Steel’s shareholders’ meeting in Siaogang District (小港), Greater Kaohsiung.
The CSBC union demanded that China Steel lower the price of steel plates to help its downstream customers maintain their global competitiveness.
On Tuesday, China Steel said it could not consider the matter solely based on CSBC’s demand, but that it must also take into account the interests of its shareholders.
The company would also violate the Fair Trade Act (公平交易法) if it sold its products to CSBC at a price that was far too low, China Steel said.