Thu, Dec 05, 2019 - Page 12 News List

Candidates urged to make Taiwan business friendly

By Crystal Hsu  /  Staff reporter

The Chinese National Association of Industry and Commerce (CNAIC, 工商協進會) yesterday called on all presidential candidates to make Taiwan more business friendly, saying the government’s 2.72 percent projected GDP growth for next year lags behind the 3 percent global average.

“All political camps should assign more importance to the opinions of business groups if they are serious about urging firms to move back to Taiwan,” CNAIC chairman Lin Por-fong (林伯豐) said after the group’s monthly gathering in Taipei.

Lin, who is chairman of Taiwan Glass Industry Corp (台玻), said that policymakers should try harder to help different sectors grapple with a US-China trade dispute, the continued uncertainty from Brexit and other challenges.

The government should grant tax credits for 5G and smart intelligence investments through 2029 and extend favorable tax terms for capital repatriations from two years to five, Lin said, adding that the government should also revisit labor rules, and allow more flexibility on working hours and overtime regulations.

It is better to raise the cap on the number of foreign workers and implement different basic wage standards for domestic and foreign workers, he said.

The government should hold a second referendum on the use of nuclear power to ensure stable and affordable electricity supply, while promoting alternative energy sources, CNAIC said.

In addition, tax authorities should consider lowering tax rates on companies’ retained earnings and close the gap in capital gain taxes between foreign and local investors, Lin said, adding that Taiwan’s tax burdens are heavier than those of Hong Kong and Singapore.

The association said it expects the government to pursue membership in regional trade blocs and secure trade agreement with foreign countries.

It has invited major presidential candidates talk about their industrial policy before the election, Lin said.

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