The Formosa Plastics Group (FPG, 台塑集團) yesterday urged the incoming Cabinet to further relax rules governing investment overseas by Taiwanese petrochemical companies.
Hong Fu-yuan (洪福源), president of Formosa Chemicals & Fibre Corp (台灣化纖) — one of the group’s major firms — said the conglomerate hoped the new Cabinet would ease current curbs that prevent the local petrochemical industry from expanding abroad and staying competitive in the world market.
Hong, who was at a press conference to announce the group’s sales revenue last month, made the remarks when asked about the group’s expectations following President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) re-election last month and his choice of new Cabinet members.
FPG has been urging the government to quicken its pace in allowing Taiwanese companies to invest in China’s naphtha-cracking sector, for instance.
The group said it was pressing ahead with a proposed US$2.5 billion expansion of an ethylene plant in Ningbo, China, and plans to resubmit application plans to the Ministry of Economic Affairs by the end of next month.
Hong has said that the expansion plan comprises more than 10 projects, and each one requires separate approvals from the Taiwanese and Chinese governments.
FPG had earlier withdrawn applications for approval of four of the projects, citing “paperwork difficulties with the Taiwanese government.”
Yesterday, however, it said it would resubmit the plans by the end of the first quarter.
In terms of sales performance, Formosa Plastics Corp (台塑) said that revenue last month plunged 23.1 percent from a year ago to NT$13.39 billion (US$454 million) amid seasonal weak demand.
On a month-on-month basis, it represented a decline of 3.7 percent from December.
The stock dropped 0.35 percent to NT$85.30 on the Taiwan Stock Exchange yesterday before the revenue announcement.
Formosa Petrochemical Corp (台塑石化) posted NT$70.57 billion in sales last month, down 2.6 percent from a year ago, but up 8.9 percent from the prior month.
The sequential growth came from rising crude oil prices, which drove up the prices of raw materials such as ethylene, it said.
The stock inched down 0.78 percent to NT$89.30 yesterday.
Plastics manufacturer Nan Ya Plastics Corp (南亞塑膠) posted NT$14.82 billion in sales last month, down 10.3 percent month-on-month and 23.6 percent from a year ago.
The stock was unchanged at NT$63.
Formosa Chemicals & Fibre posted NT$24.24 billion in revenue last month, down 7.1 percent from last year, but up 15.7 percent from December.
The stock inched up 0.59 percent to NT$84.60.