Taiwan's exports forecast to grow up to 5.51% in 2018

Taipei-Taiwan's exports are expected to grow up to 5.51 percent year-on-year in 2018, as global demand remains solid on the back of steady economic recovery around the world, the Bureau of Foreign Trade (BOFT) said Wednesday.

Citing a report from the government-sponsored Taiwan External Trade Development Council, the BOFT said Taiwan's outbound sales are expected to grow at a pace of 4.07 percent-5.51 percent this year, indicating that the country will enjoy stable export growth.

The BOFT forecast compared with a 4.51 percent increase predicted by the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics.

Among the country's major think tanks, the Taiwan Institute of Economic Research has forecast a 3.65 percent increase in exports for 2018, while the Chung-Hua Institution for Economic Research anticipates a 4.25 percent rise.

In 2017, Taiwan's exports totaled US$317.39 billion, up 13.2 percent from a year earlier, the highest growth since 2010, when a year-on-year increase of 35.2 percent was recorded.

The moderate export growth in 2018 largely reflected a relatively high comparison base in 2017, the BOFT said.

The BOFT said that as the government is pushing its New Southbound Policy, the bureau is expected to continue to provide assistance to Taiwanese exporters seeking to penetrate the markets under the policy.

The New Southbound Policy is aimed at forging closer economic ties with the 10 nations of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations bloc along with India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Australia and New Zealand.

The policy, one of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party government's priorities, is aimed at helping Taiwan to reduce its economic dependence on China.

The BOFT said it will continue to hold exhibitions in the countries under the southbound program to boost the visibility of Taiwan-made products, while efforts to invite potential buyers from these countries will be maintained.

In 2017, Taiwan's exports to the countries targeted by the policy grew 13.4 percent, with sales to Singapore up 9.1 percent at US$17.6 billion, the highest value among the countries under the policy, the BOFT said.

Source: Overseas Community Affairs Council