Industrial production hits new high in August

09/23/2020 09:27 PM
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CNA file photo
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Taipei, Sept. 23 (CAN) Industrial production in Taiwan got a boost from solid global demand for semiconductors and other high tech devices to hit a new monthly high in August, up more than 4 percent from a year earlier, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said Wednesday.

Data compiled by the MOEA showed that the August industrial production index rose 4.70 percent from a year earlier to 121.00 after a 2.75 percent year-on-year increase in July, marking the seventh consecutive month of growth.

The sub-index for the manufacturing sector, which accounts for more than 90 percent of the country's total industrial production, also rose 5.29 percent from a year earlier to 121.49 in August, according to the data.

Month-on-month, industrial production rose 3.58 percent, with production generated by the manufacturing sector up 4.27 percent, the MOEA said.

In the first eight months of this year, industrial production rose 5.86 percent from a year earlier and the manufacturing sector production also grew 6.29 percent, the MOEA added.

MOEA Department of Statistics Deputy Chief Huang Wei-chieh (黃偉傑) said the strong showing in the industrial production came about as electronic component exporters, in particular in the semiconductor industry, saw their shipments rising to meet demand for emerging technologies such as 5G applications and high-performance computing (HPC) devices.

Moreover, Huang said, rising popularity in online work and remote learning gave an additional boost to global demand for notebook and tablet computers, as well as servers.

In August, production of electronic component suppliers in Taiwan rose 17.87 percent from a year earlier, marking the ninth straight month of double-digit increase, with production generated by semiconductor makers up 22.89 percent, the MOEA went on.

In the case of computers and optoelectronics manufacturers, production also rose 4.23 percent from a year earlier, while the growth was offset by a postponement of the launch of new mobile devices by international brands, the MOEA added.

Huang said old economy industries continued to feel the pinch resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, which sent raw material prices lower, and reported a decline in production, but the magnitude of the drop has been narrowed to some extent.

In August, production of chemical material makers, base metal manufacturers, oil/coal suppliers and machinery producers fell 6.12 percent, 4.11 percent, 24.75 percent and 2.68 percent, respectively, from a year earlier, the data showed.

Taiwanese auto and auto parts companies also saw their production falling 7.1 percent from a year earlier in August.

Looking ahead, Huang said, the manufacturing sector is expected to report an 8 percent-11 percent year-on-year increase in production in September on the back of the peak season effect.

The manufacturing sector is expected to record a 5 percent-6 percent year-on-year increase in production for the third quarter and to record growth for 2020 as a whole, Huang said.

(By Liang Pei-chi and Frances Huang)

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