Government injects funds to address land shortage

By Lisa Wang  /  Staff reporter

Wed, Sep 05, 2018 - Page 12

The Ministry of Economic Affairs said it plans to allocate NT$13.5 billion (US$438.8 million) to fund new land acquisitions and development to boost industrial land supply by 542 hectares within three years.

It is the government’s latest move to help local enterprises solve the long-running land scarcity issue as manufacturers are diverting investment or seeking manufacturing sites in Taiwan to cope with the escalating US-China trade war.

Land scarcity is often a headache for local manufacturers when assessing construction of new plants, in addition to a talent drain, a labor shortage, and lacking water and electricity supply.

The ministry plans to bankroll 115 projects proposed by cash-strapped local governments to acquire land needed to develop industrial zones. Local enterprises are allowed to rent state-owned land to build factories or office buildings, or for other purposes.

“If the land problem can be solved, investments can be fulfilled,” Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) said on Monday. “This plan will have an immediate effect” in solving the land scarcity issue.

“It will be very helpful for companies looking for land to invest” in factory construction, Shen added.

The ministry would also provide financial support to local governments to improve infrastructure of industrial zones and to revitalize under-utilized land.

The ministry expects the plan to create 54,200 jobs in newly developed industrial zones.

To further boost land supply, the ministry is considering relaxing building regulations in industrial zones and might raise the building bulk ratio to 360 percent from 210 percent for new investments.