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Taiwan, Japan car makers to cooperate to penetrate Indonesia market

2017/05/13 15:11

Chairman of the government-sponsor trade promotion group Taiwan External Trade Development Council James Huang (黃志芳) CNA file photo

Jakarta, May 13 (CNA) Car makers in Taiwan and Japan have entered into talks to work together to penetrate the populous Indonesian market, according to James Huang (黃志芳), chairman of the government-sponsor trade promotion group Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA).

Huang, who is leading a delegation of Taiwanese enterprises to hold the Taipei Expo in Jakarta, said that China Motor Corp. (中華汽車), which markets cars under the Mitsubishi brand, is in talks with Mitsubishi Motor Corp. of Japan to jointly produce car parts for the Indonesian market.

Sources close to the potential deal said that Japan has been impressed by Taiwan's auto industry which is able to roll out quality car components at very competitive prices.

The China Motor and Mitsubishi Motors plan is one of more than 20 proposals which have been under negotiations for more than a year to enable Taiwanese firms to work with their Japanese counterparts to target the Association of Southeast Asian Nation (ASEAN) bloc, Huang said.

In addition to the auto industry, Huang said that these 20-plus proposed cooperation programs covered other industries, but he declined to disclose further details.

Huang said Japan has worked in the ASEAN market for a long time so the country has built closer business ties there than Taiwanese businesses have and is able to exercise great influences in the bloc.

During a trip to Tokyo in March, Huang said, he met with executives from the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), and both the TAITRA and the JETRO reached a consensus to push for cooperation of enterprises in Taiwan and Japan to seek business opportunities in global markets, including the ASEAN.

The TAITRA's efforts to help Taiwanese exporters ship more of their products to the ASEAN market are a part of President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) administration's "New Southbound Policy."

The policy is aimed at forging closer economic ties with the 10 nations of ASEAN along with India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Australia and New Zealand, to lower economic dependence on China.

The Taiwan Expo in Jakarta, which opened on Friday and will run through Sunday, showed additional evidence that the TAITRA has been gearing up to polish the image of Taiwanese products in the Indonesian market.

After the trade exhibition in Jakarta, the first stop of a series of trade promotion events, TAITRA will hold the Taiwan Expo in Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City July 26-28, in Manila Sept. 27-Oct., 1 and in Kuala Lumpur Nov. 9-11.

At the end of March, TAITRA set up an association for Taiwanese investors who want to follow the New Southbound Policy to extend their global reach. About 500 companies have jumped onto the bandwagon.

(By Yang Kai-hsiang and Frances Huang)Enditem/cs