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Hon Hai chief signs deal with NTU to train future scientists

TAIPEI -- Terry Gou, founder of the YongLin Healthcare Foundation and chairman of Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., signed an agreement Thursday with National Taiwan University (NTU) to help foster the local bio-medical industry.

The agreement aims to recruit hundreds of senior bio-medical professionals from around the world — including at least five Nobel Prize winners — to work at a bio-medical research center established by Gou.

The YongLin Bio-medical Engineering Center is expected to begin operations in March and covers areas from cell therapy to radiation medicine, smart hospitals, preventive medicine and medical electronics.

"We expect the engineering center to become a leading research hub for Chinese speakers and the global bio-medical industry," Gou said at a signing ceremony, adding that his foundation will fund the new center to the tune of NT$5 billion (US$166 million).

In 2007, the YongLin Healthcare Foundation also signed a memorandum of understanding with NTU, in which Gou promised to donate a cancer hospital to NTU and develop a bio-medical engineering program.

The foundation said it plans to invest NT$10 billion to build a adiation treatment center, the YongLin Bio-medical Engineering Center and the cancer hospital. The hospital is scheduled to be completed by 2018.

The YongLin Healthcare Foundation, however, has spent far more than a planned budget of NT$15 billion in its cooperation with NTU since 2007 because Gou said the development of bio-medical research is worth more investment.

NTU President Yang Pan-chyr said now is a good time to kick off a global recruitment project in light of the completion of the YongLin Bio-medical Engineering Center and the wider assistance from Gou.

The new research center will target new technologies and equipment that can help improve people's health, while the YungLin Healthcare Foundation will invite Nobel Prize-winners to participate in local seminars and research programs, Yang said.

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