Taiwan raises economic growth rate forecast amid optimistic export prospect

13:51, February 23, 2010      

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Taiwan's statistics authority on Monday raised its 2010 economic growth rate forecast from 4.39 percent to 4.72 percent as analysts predicted the island's high-tech exports would increase amid the global economic recovery.

Analysts from Taiwan's statistics authority said the island's export of new high-tech products such as electronic books, LEC TV, touch-screen, cloud computing and 3D products were estimated to grow by about 21 percent this year.

However, experts said the island's economic growth was largely dependant on healthy cross-Strait economic ties and international demand.

Yuan Ho-ling, director of the Graduate Institute of National Policy and Public Affairs with Taiwan's National Chung Hsing University, said the economy's growing strength was due to improving cross-Strait relations and the expansion of cross-Strait trade.

The memorandum of understanding (MOU) by the financial regulatory authorities between the Chinese mainland and Taiwan, which has already taken effect, and the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), which has yet to be signed, were factors stimulating Taiwan's economic growth, Yuan said.

Focusing on supervisory cooperation in fields of banking, securities, futures and insurance, the MOU provides thresholds and preferential policies for both sides to enter each other's market. ECFA is a wide-ranging economic pact for further normalizing trade and investment ties across the Taiwan Strait.

Bert J. Lim, President of Taiwan's World Economics Society, said Taiwan's exports had benefited from business improving on the Chinese mainland as well as internationally.

Also, trade increased noticeably due to improved cross-Strait relations and Taiwan's economy would benefit from the mainland's policies to boost its domestic demand, he said.

Taiwan authorities announced Monday that the unemployment rate dropped to 5.68 percent in January, the lowest rate in the past 12 months and the island's consumer spending soared during the Spring Festival, or the Chinese Lunar New Year.

Source: Xinhua
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