Tue, Nov 25, 2003 - Page 1 News List

Export orders increase to record high US$16.1 billion

BLOOMBERG

Export orders rose to a record high last month and factory production grew at its fastest pace in eight months as overseas consumers bought more of the nation's laptop computers, flat-panel displays and cellphones.

Orders -- indicative of shipments in one to three months -- rose 20 percent from a year earlier to US$16.1 billion, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said.

Companies such as Wintek Corp and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co are shipping more electronics components to Chinese factories, which are stepping up production as spending picks up in China and the US.

The NT dollar's 10 percent slide against the euro since the start of this year is also helping boost sales to Europe.

Overseas sales account for about half of GDP and helped the economy return to growth in the third quarter.

The government forecasts growth will accelerate to 4.1 percent next year from a forecast 3.2 percent this year.

Orders from Hong Kong rose 30 percent to US$3.7 billion last month, the ministry said.

Orders from the US, the nation's second-biggest export market, rose 22 percent last month to US$4.6 billion. Orders from Europe increased 18 percent to US$2.7 billion and those from Japan rose 24 percent to US$1.8 billion.

Overseas orders for electronics goods rose 29 percent last month to US$3.4 billion and those for telecommunications equipment increased 21 percent to US$3.4 billion.

Export orders in the first 10 months of the year amounted to US$139.13 billion, up 11.76 percent year-on-year, the ministry said.

The ministry also announced figures showing that industrial output last month was up 6.20 percent from September and up 8.95 percent from a year earlier.

Output for the 10 months to last month rose 4.59 percent.

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