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Taiwan eyes Kingdom to boost exports

Tuesday 20 April 2010

RIYADH: The head of the Taiwanese trade delegation currently in the Kingdom on an eight-day visit said on Wednesday night that there is great scope for an expanded bilateral trade between Taiwan and Saudi Arabia, which currently touches $15.24 billion. Sheng-Chung Lin, deputy chairman of t​he Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), said he is optimistic about the trade relationship between the two countries.

He added that the delegation also visited the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) and was welcomed by Secretary General Hussein Al-Athel, who was in Taiwan recently and with whom he discussed the local economic situation and areas of possible cooperation between them.

“Taiwan has high-quality products which Saudi Arabia needs and looks for. Saudi Arabia is also our biggest trading partner in the Middle East,” Lin said.

Asked what made the delegation visit the Kingdom at this point in time, Lin said, “Due to the global economic crisis which has badly affected our traditional markets such as the United States, our exports have also suffered, so we feel there’s a need to explore the possibilities of expanding our trade in the Middle East like Saudi Arabia.”

Lin said that there’s much that Taiwan could offer to Saudi Arabia in trade and industry. Its leading exports to the Kingdom include consumer products, machinery and hardware. Acer, Taiwan’s IT hardware giant, has set up an assembly plant in the Kingdom for the production of desktop PCs in collaboration with Riyadh-based Advanced Electronics.

Lin said that other areas of high technology which Taiwan’s experience could come in handy include nanotechnology. Taiwan, which has made a name for itself in this field, set up the National Nano Device Laboratory in 2002.

Lin also said that the delegation has also come for a visit at this time because Saudi Arabia has increased its manufacturing base up to 30 percent. “Taiwan has experience in this. I think this is a good opportunity for us. We just have to facilitate discussions on this. So this is the right time to come,” he said.

He said that the delegation visited the Council of Saudi Chambers of Commerce and Industry (CSCCI) and had talks with Secretary General Fahd bin Saleh Al-Sultan who will visit Taiwan next month.

The delegation will visit the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry today and will organize a trade meeting with Saudi businessmen at the Meridien Hotel from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and then from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

(source: Arabnews)