Staff writer, with agencies

Thu, Dec 20, 2012 - Page 14

TAIEX up on US optimism

The TAIEX ended in positive territory yesterday following a rally on Wall Street overnight that was driven by rising optimism that Washington will reach an agreement to resolve the US’ pending “fiscal cliff,” dealers said.

Buying focused on select large-cap electronics stocks as investors took advantage of a recent retreat, they said.

The weighted index closed up 33.73 points, or 0.44 percent, at 7,677.47 on turnover of NT$85.39 billion (US$2.93 billion).

AUO expresses pricing regret

Flat-panel maker AU Optronics Corp (AUO, 友達) expressed regret yesterday after a US jury found that one of the company’s executives was involved in a price-fixing conspiracy.

A federal jury in the US District Court for the Northern District of California in San Francisco found Steven Leung (梁兆龍), a former manager of AUO’s desktop display division, guilty of participating in a scheme to fix prices of TFT-LCD panels between 2002 and 2006.

In September, the court fined AUO US$500 million, payable within three years, while AUO president Chen Hsuan-bin (陳炫彬) and former AUO executive president Hui Hsiung (熊暉) were both sentenced to three years in prison and fined US$200,000.

Minister plans sector growth

Minister Without Portfolio Kuan Chung-ming (管中閔), an economist in the field of econometrics, yesterday proposed setting up an “experimental zone” for service sector businesses to promote “sensible economic growth.”

Kuan said in a speech at an economic forum in Taipei that one way to increase Taiwan’s employment is to expand the scale of the service industry, particularly the “high-wage service sector.”

His plan is to integrate a facility with tourism-derived services in which foreign travellers can enjoy services that currently do not exist, Kuan said.

This, would help the government’s plans to promote economic momentum he said.

Chunghwa plans new outlets

Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), Taiwan’s biggest telecoms carrier, is scheduled to open 50 new-generation outlets next year, a company official said on Tuesday.

The company is also planning to open another 50 new-generation outlets in 2014, Chunghwa vice president Lee Yen-sung (李炎松) said.

The new outlets, a joint venture with Senao International Co (神腦國際), will focus on customer experience and provide more value-added services such as music, ebooks and movies on demand, Lee said.

Lee said that the company has no plans to establish a company to open its own retail units.

Group plans HSR development

A consortium led by Cathay Life Insurance Co (國泰人壽) signed a contract with the Bureau of High Speed Rail on Tuesday to develop a site next to the Taoyuan station of the High Speed Rail (HSR) line.

The consortium won a bid in September for a 50-year lease to develop the site, which is expected to generate at least NT$10 billion in revenue every year.

The project includes an office building, a hotel and a 30,000 ping shopping mall.

The Gloria Hotel Group (華泰飯店集團), a member of the consortium, said the shopping mall will begin a trial run in 2016 with full operation scheduled for 2019.

NT down against greenback

The New Taiwan dollar fell against the US dollar yesterday, declining NT$0.002 to close at NT$29.102.

Turnover totaled about US$632 million during the trading session.