Forum highlights economic ties with Southbound countries

Deputy Economics Minister Kung Ming-hsin appears in this CNA file photo.

The economics ministry is celebrating the growth of economic ties with the target countries of the government’s New Southbound policy. At a forum held with dignitaries from several of these countries, the deputy economics minister outlined just how far these ties have come.

Since 2016, Taiwan has been pushing for closer ties with countries in South and Southeast Asia, as well as Australia and New Zealand, under the New Southbound policy. On Wednesday, the economics ministry celebrated the policy’s successes at the third annual Taiwan-ASEAN-India Strategic Investment Partnership Forum.

Representatives from Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, and, for the first time, India, were in attendance.

At the forum, deputy economics minister Kung Ming-hsin explained how much growth the past two years have brought on the investment front. He said that Taiwanese investment in the countries targeted under the policy grew more than 50% between 2016 and 2017.

Kung also said that this year has seen further growth. He said that during the first five months of the year, Taiwanese businesses further stepped up their investment in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Myanmar and India.

Meanwhile, Kung spoke about the help his ministry offers Taiwanese businesses looking to get involved in trade, investment, and production in target countries. He also said the government has worked to bring closer ties in the area of industrial cooperation through summits with representatives of Southeast Asian countries and India.