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Industrial production index up 7 percent: MOEA

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The industrial production index registered at 87.99 in February, up 7 percent from a year ago, according to a reported released by the Ministry of Economic Affairs yesterday.

The manufacturing sector, which constitutes more than 90 percent of industrial production, grew 7.59 percent year-on-year.

With regard to the four major industries in the manufacturing sector, the IT electronics industry grew 8.04 percent, the metal and machinery industry rose 11.78 percent, and the commodity industry grew 1.67 percent. The chemical industry declined 4.54 percent.

Major Lines of Production

Demand for low- and mid-end mobile devices was strong in February. Strong sales of semiconductor products drove up demand for electronic chips, wafer foundry and integrated circuits. As a consequence, the electronics parts and components industry grew 8.8 percent year-on-year, the MOEA said. However, sales of panel products dropped 9.97 percent year-on-year.

Production in the electronic and optical products industry went up 3.75 percent year-on-year. However, fierce competition in the mobile devices market, as well as declining demand for TV sets and cameras, have contributed to lower production levels in the electronic and optical products industry, the MOEA said.

Production in the motor vehicle and parts industry grew 19.32 percent year-on-year, the highest among all industries. As car companies rolled out new models, sales of sedans surged. In addition, the harsh winter condition resulted in greater need of car maintenance, driving up demand for vehicle parts and components, the MOEA said.

Production of machinery equipment grew 13.91 percent. As the global economy stabilized, firms' investment in machinery equipments had increased, the MOEA said.

Survey of Manufacturers

According to the ministry's survey, 28.5 percent of manufacturers in the nation expect higher production output in March compared with February, while 61.4 percent of those surveyed expect to see the same level of output, and 10.1 percent expected lower production.

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