TAIWAN Business.EU l institutions l agencies
Successful Development of Cooperation between Taiwan and the Czech Republic Our questions were answered by Ing. Vladimír Bartl, deputy minister of industry and trade. He manages the EU and foreign trade section. He likes to use even non-traditional methods to promote traditional Czech products - he travels to business trips flying Czech planes or driving Czech motorcycles. What are the current projects of Czech companies on Taiwan? Czech companies are gaining ground in Taiwan particularly in the area of exporting automobiles, electrical systems and security equipment; cooperation in the production of machine tools and cutting tools also has an upward trend. Czech luxury consumer goods such as glass, bijouterie, designer lighting equipment and cosmetic products have secured a prominent position on the Taiwanese market. Czech beers and other beverages are also gaining on popularity.
What is the mutual trade balance between the Czech Republic and Taiwan? In 2017, Czech export reached its historical maximum totalling CZK 5.4 billion, which is more than a 45 % increase compared to 2013. Bilateral trade has grown in the last five years by 20 % to a total of CZK 29.4 billion, but there is still a significant deficit on the Czech side. However, Czech import from Taiwan consists in great part of components for production; the products made from Taiwanese investment in the Czech Republic are then re-exported (particularly in the electronics sector). Therefore, we do not just import goods for the end user. How are you supporting Czech companies' trading and investment in Taiwan? Supporting the growth of business relations and opportunities for Czech companies in Taiwan is the main purpose and mission of the Czech Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei. It continuously organises events focusing on supporting special 2018
trade, presenting investment opportunities but also promoting Czech culture and education. Recent years have also seen successful development of cooperation between agencies Czechlnvest and CzechTrade, which do not have direct representation on Taiwan. At the level of companies and entrepreneur organisations, regular meeting are being held within the Czech – Taiwan Joint Business Council. These meetings are organised by the Confederation of Industry of the Czech Republic in cooperation with Taiwanese partners. For the long-term, three technological areas have been defined for future cooperation – nano-technologies, life sciences and high-precision mechanical engineering. We have achieved encouraging results in the field of machine tools in particular. We organise bilateral consultations between the Ministry of Economic Affairs in Taipei and our Ministry of Industry and Trade to create a dialogue about opportunities to develop our mutual trade and economic cooperation.
One of the goals of the Taiwanese government is to strengthen foreign investment. What areas would your recommend for Czech companies to invest in? Fields where Czech companies are traditionally strong are definitely deserving of attention, such as environmental protection, power engineering, new technologies, smart cities, key branches of Industry 4.0, infrastructure projects or our food industry and manufacturing of sophisticated food processing technologies. What current activities is the Czech Republic utilising to progress mutual trade relations? The Czech Economic and Cultural Office Taipei is organising a number of events in 2018 concentrating primarily on ICT, VaVal or transport, where the Czech Republic has a number of opportunities for specific cooperation. The aim is to increase the public awareness about the potential of the Taiwanese market and promote business and investment opportunities for Czech companies. An important component of supporting Czech export is also improving the quality of services provided to Czech companies interested in the Taiwanese market. What significant investments does Taiwan have in the Czech Republic? We have recorded a total of 33 projects of Taiwanese investors in the Czech Republic in 2017. These projects represent approximately EUR 1 billion and more than 16,000 newly created jobs. So far, 17 Taiwanese