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MST to develop 3D printing for car industry

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Vice Minister of Science and Technology (MST, 科技部) Lin Yi-ping (林一平) yesterday announced plans to initiate a collaborative endeavor with the Ministry of Economic Affairs to develop applications for fabricating precision automotive parts with the fledgling metallic 3D printing technology.

The MST stated that the government is poised to allocate more than NT$1 billion for the endeavor.

Science and Technology Minister Chang Shan-chung (張善政) yesterday pledged to establish comprehensive guidelines for improving the nation's technological industries before stepping down from his post in two years' time. In addition, Chang stated that he aims to address the discrepancies between what businesses are looking for in new recruits and the qualifications and capabilities that graduating students are equipped with following their education. Chang also emphasized the need for the academia to become more in tune with the needs of industries, while pledging his effort toward this end.

Most notably, Chang stated that conventionally, technology transfer centers (技術移轉中心) at universities are focused on helping inventors acquire patents, and that in the future, the ministry will begin actively seeking promising new developments such as 3D printing and oversee the process of bringing concepts to market through collaborative efforts with enterprises.

Lin added that the government has plans to develop 3D printing technology to expand material utilization of metallic materials in addition to plastic. Initial plans have sights on fabricating precision automotive parts.

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