Sat, Mar 05, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Orchid festival opens in Tainan

MAJOR ATTRACTION:Last year’s show attracted 320,000 visitors and US$187.5 million worth of orders to the city, figures expected to be 20% higher this year

Staff Writer, with CNA

Employees at Taiwan Sugar Co’s Jianshanpi resort on Tuesday show off a special pool developed by Japanese designers. The company has gained special rights to use the pool during the area’s orchid -festival.

Photo: Yang Chin-cheng, Taipei Times

This year’s Taiwan International Orchid Show begins its 10-day run today at the at the Taiwan Orchid Plantation in Greater Tainan.

Addressing the opening ceremony yesterday, Vice President Vincent Siew (蕭萬長) said orchids are one of Taiwan’s most important agricultural exports and also a symbol of the country’s soft power.

BIGGER SHOW

Siew expressed confidence that this year’s show, which is more diverse and larger in scale than before, would achieve greater success than in previous years.

Wang Chih-kang (王志剛), chairman of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council, a co--organizer of the exhibition, said 13 leading orchid buyers from nine countries had been invited to take part in this year’s event.

They have scheduled 201 one-on-one trading sessions with local growers.

Greater Tainan Mayor William Lai (賴清德) said the show attracted 320,000 visitors and brought NT$5.5 billion (US$187.5 million) in orders to local orchid growers last year.

He predicted a 20 percent growth in the attendance and order value this year.

ORCHID KINGDOM

Taiwan is known as the “Kingdom of the Butterfly Orchid” because it is the world’s largest exporter of the flower.

Last year, Taiwan’s floral exports were valued at US$149 million, with orchid exports accounting for US$116.56 million, or 77 percent of the total, an increase of 36 percent from the previous year.

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