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Call for Taiwan-China co-branding feasible: scholars

TAIPEI--The idea of Taiwan and China joining together to develop brands proposed recently by China's top negotiator with Taiwan is feasible, Taiwanese scholars said.

Taiwanese and Chinese entrepreneurs could set common standards and develop brand names to capitalize on their separate strengths in world markets, said Tu Tze-chen, head of the Industrial Technology Research Institute's Knowledge-based Economy and Competitiveness Research Center.

Taiwan has well-established research and development and design capabilities for electronics goods but they have been more oriented toward western markets rather than China's market, Tu said.

He argued that if the two sides could develop common brands with the help of Taiwan's R&D and manufacturing capabilities to competein China, there would be nothing wrong with that for Taiwan.

Gordon Sun, director of the Macroeconomic Forecasting Center at the Taiwan Institute of Economic Research, said that “building bridges” across the Taiwan Strait has delivered little to date, but he believed that the co-branding idea could mitigate unnecessary competition.

The co-development of brands by Taiwan and China could also help change the traditional model of Taiwanese suppliers acting as contractors for major American brands, with most of the profits going to the branded vendor, he said.

With its export market on the decline, Taiwan should respond to China's initiative and see what can be done to develop the concept, Sun said.

Chen Deming, president of the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits, said during a recent trip to Taiwan that Chinese enterprises hoped to work with their Taiwanese counterparts in the areas of research and development, design, and international sales.

In a visit with Lin Join-sane, head of Taiwan's Straits Exchange Foundation, Chen said promoting strategic cooperation between entrepreneurs of the two sides was an important objective during his eight-day trip.

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