Developers helping Vietnam, Indonesia with highway plans

By Lee Hsin-fang and Jonathan Chin  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Mon, Sep 25, 2017 - Page 3

Taiwanese developers are assisting Vietnam and Indonesia with highway construction planning as part of the New Southbound Policy, a government official involved in the projects said on Saturday.

The firms involved are pursuing contracts to build the highways they are helping to plan, the official said on condition of anonymity.

The developers’ ability to build the highways is not in question; whether they will obtain the contracts depends on the host nation’s willingness to award the projects to Taiwanese firms, the official said.

The government’s target is to help the country’s developers obtain foreign contracts valuing about NT$20 billion (US$662.4 million) a year, the official added.

Winning infrastructure contracts, developing tourism and creating Web sites that promote Taiwanese businesses are the three spear points for President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) New Southbound Policy, the official said.

The government is to help developers draft a coherent marketing strategy and to stay relevant in Southeast Asia in the long term, the official said.

The nation’s image in Southeast Asia, communication channels and economic links are to be strengthened, the official said.

The emphasis for overseas infrastructure development is on power generation, petrochemicals, “smart” transportation and communication, urban public transit and ecofriendly engineering, the official said.

The government has selected domestic contractors that have a proven track record in similar projects at home, the official said.

The developers are competing to provide technical assistance with infrastructure planning and to obtain development contracts for the projects, the official said.

The government is to aid developers in various ways, including encouraging cooperation between businesses, helping businesses raise capital and facilitating their relationship with foreign governments, the official said.

For example, the government is to award subsidies to developers to set up initial operations abroad and to expedite their capitalization by enhancing syndicated bank loan provision, the official said.

Regarding e-commerce, the government is working to improve the Info Taiwan Trade Web site, which should promote more than 25,000 companies in Southeast Asia, the official said.

Taiwan’s small and medium-sized firms need online trade platforms to market their products internationally, Minister Without Portfolio John Deng (鄧振中) said, adding that Web sites for the industries could increase business by US$30 million.

The government is to cooperate with technical universities to train at least 5,000 online marketing professionals per year, including classes for 2,700 employees at 200 companies each year, he said.

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