The government should increase the budget of the Small and Medium Enterprise Credit Guarantee Fund of Taiwan to NT$10 billion (US$341 million) instead of slashing it to NT$4 billion, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said yesterday.
In a meeting with manufacturing industry representatives, Su said he recognized the sector’s importance, adding that during his time as premier he had endeavoured to take care of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs); the central and southern parts of the country; and the middle and lower classes.
Taiwan was founded on small and medium-sized enterprises, Su said, criticizing President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) administration for being callous and slashing the fund’s budget when the nation was facing recession.
Su said the government should be implementing policies that help create a manufacturing industry of high value.
Citing US President Barack Obama’s calls for re-industrialization as an example, Su said the government should seek to increase domestic demand and encourage citizens to use products that are locally made, adding that the government should also be helping small to medium-sized enterprises apply for patents and trademarks.
In his annual address to the US Congress in January, Obama emphasized the re-industrialization of the US and called for taxes on corporations who moved offshore, while ending taxes on domestic manufacturers.
The government should help small and medium-sized enterprises create a market, Su said, giving as examples how he had brought farmers to the north of the country to market their agricultural products as Pingtung County commissioner, and how he had helped promote Yingge (鶯歌) pottery and Pingsi (平溪) sky lanterns when he was then-Taipei County commissioner.
Small and medium-sized enterprises should unite and work hard to open to the international market, Su said, adding he hoped the enterprises would be able to find their own way.