Industrial production hit by electronics slowdown

By Helen Ku  /  Staff reporter

Fri, Sep 27, 2013 - Page 13

The industrial production index declined 0.7 percent last month year-on-year after rising 2.08 percent in July, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said yesterday, citing a high comparison base last year.

On a monthly basis, the index fell 2.05 percent.

Production in the manufacturing sector — which accounts for more than 90 percent of the nation’s total industrial output — declined 1.67 percent month-on-month and 0.59 percent year-on-year last month, dragged down mainly by a double-digit annual decrease in the output of electronics and optical products, statistics department Deputy Director-General Yang Kuei-hsien (楊貴顯) said at a press conference.

“The industrial production index fell on both a monthly and annual basis last month because output of electrical components, chemical products, machineries and automobiles all contracted by up to 20 percent month-on-month last month and because of last year’s higher base,” Yang said. “It is still likely that the index could rebound by the end of the year, if the US recovery could proceed at a steady pace and if the EU’s financial health could improve soon.”

During the first eight months of the year, industrial production grew 0.39 percent from a year earlier, with manufacturing output increasing 0.27 percent, the ministry said.

According to the ministry’s survey, 70.8 percent of Taiwanese firms forecast industrial production would remain flat this month, while 17.4 percent forecast that output would continue to fall and 11.8 percent expected growth.