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Taiwan's R&D spending over 3% of GDP in 2012

TAIPEI -- Taiwan's research and development spending topped 3 percent of the country's gross domestic product (GDP) in 2012, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said Tuesday, citing Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) statistics.

The MOEA said that after the ratio of Taiwan's R&D expenditures to its GDP topped 2 percent in 2001, it has been rising ever since.

In 2012, the ratio topped 3 percent to hit 3.1 percent of Taiwan's GDP, compared with 2.9 percent and 3 percent in 2010 and 2011, respectively, according to the MOEA, citing the OECD's most recent update of its “Main Science and Technology Indicators.”

The ministry said Taiwan's R&D expenditures were mostly concentrated in the computer, electronics and optical industry, which accounted for 72.7 percent of the total in 2012, ahead of the chemicals and chemical product sector at 3.2 percent and the electrical machinery sector at 2.9 percent.

Business enterprise R&D spending made up 74.1 percent of total R&D spending in Taiwan in 2012, according to the ministry, citing the OECD figures.

By comparison, South Korea's R&D spending to GDP ratio in 2012 reached 4.4 percent, Japan's was 3.4 percent, the United States' was 2.8 percent and China's was 2.0 percent, the statistics showed.

South Korea, invested 49.9 percent of its total R&D spending in the computer, electronics and optical industry, followed by 11.3 percent in the auto industry and 6.3 percent in the machinery sector in 2012, the OECD figures showed.

In China, the computer, electronics and optical industry accounted for 15.2 percent of the country's spending on R&D, ahead of the machinery sector and the base metal sector at 11.5 percent each, the ministry said.

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