Taiwanese financial holding companies’ exposure to ASEAN has grown by more than NT$100 billion (US$3.3 billion) since June last year, according to statistics released on Saturday by the Financial Supervisory Commission.
The increase was mainly caused by rising lending by banks and large investments by financial companies in ASEAN members, the commission said.
Statistics for 16 Taiwanese financial holding companies showed a total exposure of NT$887.51 billion at the end of June, an increase of NT$102.78 billion from a year earlier.
The figure at the end of June was NT$16.41 billion higher than the March figure, the data showed.
The increased financial exposure reflects companies’ response to President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) New Southbound Policy, which aims to forge closer economic ties with the 10 ASEAN members, as well as South Asia, Australia and New Zealand, analysts said.
The policy was initiated by the Democratic Progressive Party, which took office in May last year, as part of its efforts to reduce economic dependence on China.
Investments in ASEAN members rose NT$47.06 billion in the 12 months from the end of June last year, while lending grew by NT$48.87 billion, commission data showed.
The 16 firms’ exposure in Singapore totaled NT$236.78 billion, the highest among all ASEAN members, the commission said.
Indonesia was second with NT$198.58 billion and Vietnam third at NT$144.14 billion, it added.
The increase in exposure was highest in Indonesia, rising NT$42.76 billion during the period, while Vietnam ranked second with exposure increasing by NT$34.11 billion, the commission said.
In third and fourth place were Singapore and Cambodia, with increases of NT$19.15 billion and NT$16.07 billion respectively, it added.
As of the end of June, the companies’ financial exposure to foreign markets totaled NT$13.92 trillion, compared with NT$12.87 trillion a year earlier, the commission said.
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