Sun, Oct 16, 2011 - Page 11 News List

South Korea’s FTA with US will not harm TSMC: Chang

Staff Writer, with CNA

The free-trade agreement (FTA) between the US and South Korea, which will take effect next year, will have little impact on Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電), the company’s chairman and CEO Morris Chang (張忠謀) said yesterday.

However, Chang declined to speculate how the FTA might affect other electronics businesses.

Speaking at TSMC’s annual sports day in Hsinchu, he reassured employees that the company will continue to give salary increases next year and will not resort to staff cutbacks despite the global economic downturn.

TSMC will not lay off workers or ask them to take leave without pay, he said to cheers from the employees at the event.

Although the economic environment is full of uncertainties, TSMC still has a competitive edge because of its talented workers, abundant capital and leading technology, which allow it to deliver excellent performance even in a recession, Chang said.

Asked about the Occupy Wall Street movement in the US, Chang said he has always been against the widening gap between the rich and the poor.

Governments around the world should pay closer attention to the issue of the middle class’ slow income growth and the exponential growth in the top 1 percent of the wealthy, he said.

He said a lot could be done to narrow the wealth gap, but added that he was not in any position to intervene in these affairs.

What he can do, Chang said, is offer TSMC employees better working conditions and benefits,.

TSMC is the world’s largest manufacturer of made-to-order chips and its operations extend to lighting and solar energy.

The company employs over 34,000 workers, Chang said.

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