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Nation eyes expansion in emerging markets

The China Post news staff--Taiwan is seeking to expand its presence in emerging markets, aiming to raise the proportion of shipments to these areas to 30 percent of total exports, Cabinet officials said yesterday.

Through pooling together resources from different ministries and departments, the Cabinet aims to custom-design strategies for different emerging markets, said the officials

They made the remarks at a press conference after a Cabinet meeting held to discuss ways to develop emerging markets in-line with the government's overall goal of revitalizing Taiwan's economy.

The Cabinet promised last month that the general public would “feel” the differences in one month.

Steven Chen, secretary-general of the Cabinet, said the government has been devising all sorts of plans and projects for improving the economy although the general public may not “feel” the difference.

He said “feeling” may be subjective. He said Taiwan has earned good international ratings, but people may still argue they “feel” nothing.

Chen said the Cabinet team cares less about what the public thinks than its “responsibility to history” and to the future of Taiwan.

But lawmakers from the opposition Democratic Progressive Party criticized the government, saying the public only feels “anger, pain and frustration.”

The United Evening News said Premier Sean Chen originally intended to preside over the press conference but after the meeting he let the secretary-general, Economic Minister Shih Yen-shiang and Cabinet spokesperson Cheng Li-wen talk to reporters instead.

Shih said the government has a three-pronged strategy: developing emerging markets, defending its share in core markets and expanding to other potential markets.

Starting next year, the government will include students from Brazil, Russia, Mexico and Middle Eastern nations in scholarship programs in order to strengthen ties with emerging markets, the officials said.

According to Cabinet statistics, Taiwan's shipments to emerging markets accounted for 24 percent of all exports in 2010 and 26 percent in 2011. This is expected to reach 28.1 percent this year.

The figures also show that in September alone, Taiwan's export value totaled US$27.17 billion, registering the first positive growth in six months.

From January to September, Taiwan's exports to emerging markets rose 5.6 percent compared to the same period last year, showing that Taiwan is regaining its export momentum, the officials said.

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Democratic Progressive Party lawmakers hold portraits of President Ma Ying-jeou with captions expressing what they said was the public's frustration, anger and discontent over the government's inability to improve the economy, in Taipei, yesterday. (CNA)

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