Taipei, May 30 (CNA) President Ma Ying-jeou said Wednesday the decline in Taiwan's exports is alarming, and he urged further economic cooperation with the country’s major trading partners to improve its competitiveness.
According to the latest figures, exports in the first four months of the year fell 4.7 percent year-on-year to US$96.37 billion.
The drop in exports, which was largely due to the European debt crisis, raises a red flag for Taiwan's economy since exports make up 70 percent of the nation's gross domestic product, Ma said.
The president said Taiwan needs to continue its efforts to collaborate with its major trading partners by signing pacts with them, following the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement with China in 2010.
Taiwan is in talks with Singapore and New Zealand on separate bilateral economic cooperation agreements, Ma said at a meeting with Lawrence Summers, former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury and chairman of the White House National Economic Council.
Taiwan signed an investment agreement with Japan, its second largest trading partner, in September last year.
(By Kelven Huang and Scully Hsiao)