Working factories increase, MOEA says


Wed, Nov 09, 2005 - Page 10

The number of local factories in operation has been steadily rising over the past couple of years, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said on Monday.

Quoting the results of various field surveys, MOEA officials said the number of factories in operation reached 77,522 at the end of last year, marking a 1.2 percent year-on-year rise.

Compared with the 2002 figure, the number marked a 4.6 percent increase, the officials said.

The officials were responding to media reports that the number of domestic factories in operation declined to about 70,000 at the end of last year from more than 90,000 registered in 2003 and 2002.

According to the officials, the number of factories in operation should not be compared to the number of registered factories. Legally registered factories might not necessarily be in operation, they said.

The officials also disputed media reports claiming that Taiwan saw nearly zero new investments this year. Such reports were not correct, they said.

According to MOEA tallies, private investments amounted to NT$731.4 billion (US$216.93 million) in 1,070 projects in the first nine months of this year.

"Our projected annual investment goal is NT$860 billion. In terms of the amount registered in the nine-month period, our target was 85 percent complete," a ministry official said.