Mon, May 15, 2017 - Page 16 News List

Automakers eye Indonesia market

Staff writer, with CNA in Jakarta

Automakers in Taiwan and Japan have entered into talks aimed at teaming up to tap the Indonesian market, Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA, 外貿協會) Chairman James Huang (黃志芳) said in Jakarta.

Huang, who is heading a delegation of Taiwanese enterprises at the Taipei Expo in the Indonesian capital, said that China Motor Corp (CMC, 中華汽車), which markets vehicles under the Mitsubishi brand, is in talks with Mitsubishi Motor Corp of Japan to jointly produce auto parts for the Indonesian market.

The CMC and Mitsubishi plan is one of more than 20 projects which have been under negotiations for more than one year that would enable Taiwanese firms to work with their Japanese counterparts to target ASEAN member nations, Huang said.

In addition to the auto industry, Huang said that the proposed cooperation programs covered other industries, but he declined to disclose further details.

Huang said Japan has worked in the ASEAN market for a long time so the nation has built closer business ties in the bloc than Taiwanese businesses have and is able to exercise more influence.

Huang said that during a trip to Tokyo in March, he met with executives from the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), and that TAITRA and JETRO reached a consensus to push for cooperation of enterprises in Taiwan and Japan to seek business opportunities in global markets, including the ASEAN region.

TAITRA’s efforts to help Taiwanese exporters ship more of their products to the ASEAN market are a part of President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) administration’s “new southbound policy” that aims to forge closer economic ties with the 10 ASEAN member nations as well as India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Australia and New Zealand, to lower economic dependence on China.

The Taiwan Expo in Jakarta, which opened on Friday and closed yesterday, shows how TAITRA is gearing up to polish the image of Taiwanese products in the Indonesian market.

TAITRA is next to take the Taiwan Expo to Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City, where it is to run from July 26 to 28,

The show is to be in Manila from Sept. 27 to Oct. 1 and Kuala Lumpur from Nov. 9 to 11.

At the end of March, TAITRA set up an association for Taiwanese investors who want to take advantage of the “new southbound policy” to extend their global reach.

About 500 companies have signed up so far.

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