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Taiwan manufacturing sector to grow 3.09%: IEK

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Thanks to a better economic outlook, the output value of Taiwan's manufacturing sector is expected to grow 3.09 percent in 2014, up from 2.15 percent in 2013, the Industrial Economics and Knowledge Center (IEK) said yesterday.

The IEK under the government-sponsored Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI, 工業技術研究院) held a press conference to provide its forecast for the manufacturing sector yesterday.

According to the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) latest forecast, global economy will grow 3.6 percent in 2014, up 0.7 percent from 2013. IEK said that economies in the U.S. and Europe are on track for recovery, and Taiwan's manufacturing sector is expected to benefit from it. However, the economies of mainland China and Japan face uncertainties, the IEK said.

China's Economic Restructuring a Risk Factor

Forty percent of Taiwan's exports go to mainland China, and according to IMF, China will see 7.3-percent growth in 2014. The IEK said that China's booming economy is expected to benefit Taiwan's manufacturing sector.

However, the Chinese government plans to carry out structural changes to its economy and is likely to rely less and less on imports in the future. This is a risk factor that may hurt Taiwan's manufacturing sector, and therefore there is a 20 percent chance that the manufacturing sector may face decline, IEK researcher Peter Chen (陳志強) said.

Taiwan's exports to China only increased slightly in 2013, and it was a reflection that China will rely less and less on imported products, echoed Tsai Horng-ming (蔡宏明), deputy secretary general of the Chinese National Federation of Industries (中華民國全國工業總會)

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