Business and Finance

Taiwan’s MediaTek replaces Qualcomm as top smartphone chip supplier in Q3

Taiwan News
Date: 2020/12/27
By:  Central News Agency

(CNA photo)

Taiwan-based integrated circuit designer MediaTek Inc. beat its American rival Qualcomm Inc. to become the largest smartphone chip supplier worldwide in the third quarter of this year, according to Counterpoint Technology Market Research.

The Hong Kong-headquartered market information advisory firm said that MediaTek took a 31 percent share of the global smartphone chip market in the July-September period, topping Qualcomm's 29 percent.

MediaTek's third-quarter market share grew 5 percentage points from a year earlier, helping the Taiwanese firm to rise one notch in the ranking, while Qualcomm's share fell 2 percentage points from a year earlier, Counterpoint said.

However, it went on, Qualcomm took a 39 percent share in the global 5G smartphone chip market and served as the largest 5G chip supplier in the third quarter.    [FULL  STORY]

101 Taipei companies report layoffs this year, highest since 2011

Focus Taiwan
Date: 12/27/2020
By: Chen Yu-ting and Joseph Yeh

Far Eastern Air Transport flight attendants. CNA file photo

Taipei, Dec. 27 (CNA) Companies in Taipei who had reported layoffs as of November reached 101, the highest number since 2011, the Taipei City government's Department of Labor (DOL) said Sunday, citing slow economic growth and weakening global demand caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The number of laid-off workers reported by these companies in the first 11 months of 2020 hit a total of 3,970, according to the DOL.

Among the companies, 27 percent are in the wholesale and retail businesses, who let go 1,089 workers, followed by those in accommodation and food services (576 workers) and information and communications (458 workers), DOL data shows.

Far Eastern Air Transport as a single entity has laid off most employees so far this year, firing 528 people after announcing in December 2019 that it was ceasing operations.

Taiwan’s TSMC begins hiring push for $12 billion Arizona facility

New hires will first go through a year-long training at TSMC’s Tainan facility

Taiwan News
Date: 2020/12/24
By: Eric Chang, Taiwan News, Contributing Writer

TSMC Tainan office building (Reuters photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) has begun recruiting over 600 engineers and executives for its planned wafer fab in the U.S.

TSMC plans to have current employees and new hires work at a US$12 billion foundry that will start construction next year in Phoenix, Arizona, Chairman Mark Liu (劉德音) told Nikkei Asia. Liu said upwards of 300 current employees and managers will be sent from Taiwan to Phoenix to help get things going at the 5-nanometer process facility.

The U.S. has said it will offer as many working visas as TSMC needs, sources told the outlet. The Taiwanese company is also looking to hire 300 engineers with one to two years of experience who are eligible to work in the U.S., Liu added.

These new engineers will initially go through a year-long intensive training program at TSMC’s 5-nm plant located at the Southern Taiwan Science Park in Tainan — where training will be conducted in English — before heading to Phoenix. TSMC, the world’s largest contract chipmaker, first announced plans to build the Arizona plant in May.   [FULL  STORY]

Taiwan shares close up 0.40%

Focus Taiwan
Date: 12/24/2020
By: Y.F. Low

Taipei, Dec. 24 (CNA) Taiwan shares closed up 57.19 points, or 0.40 percent, at 14,280.28 Thursday on turnover of NT$221.89 billion (US$7.89 billion).    [SOURCE]

KGI fined NT$3.36m over trader’s death

LAX CONTROLS: The FSC said the firm failed to catch a trader secretly managing 12 clients’ funds, but did not agree that it set unreasonable demands on employees

Taipei Times
Date: Dec 25, 2020
0By: Kao Shih-ching / Staff reporter

Photo: CNA

The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) yesterday fined KGI Securities Ltd (凱基證券) NT$3.36 million (US$117,676) for poor internal control and lax management after a stock broker, surnamed Lai (賴), allegedly committed suicide in August in Taipei due to huge investment losses.

Lai’s death has sparked public concern over KGI Securities’ management, with his family accusing the company of putting undue pressure on its brokers, including encouraging Lai to illegally trade futures for his clients, which resulted in huge investment losses.

The commission announced the penalty after releasing its long-awaited investigative report on the incident, three-and-a-half months after it launched a probe.

Lai had secretly managed at least 12 clients’ funds with their approval since 2018, helping operate their discretionary accounts, which means he decided which futures to buy or sell without their orders, an illegal behavior for a broker, Securities and Futures Bureau Deputy Director Kuo Chia-chun (郭佳君) told a news conference in New Taipei City.   [FULL  STORY]

The Importance of a U.S.-Taiwan Bilateral Trade Agreement

The National Bureau of Asian Research
Date: December 21, 2020
By: Lotta Danielsson

Lotta Danielsson argues that the signing of a high-standards and comprehensive bilateral U.S.-Taiwan trade agreement would have positive political implications and help improve Taiwan’s regional economic integration.

U.S.-Taiwan trade and economic relations have taken center stage in the bilateral relationship over the last several months, gaining steam since August 28, 2020, when President Tsai Ing-wen unilaterally announced measures to open the Taiwan market to certain previously banned U.S. pork and beef imports. Expanded economic engagement has included a visit to Taiwan by Keith Krach, the undersecretary for economic growth, energy, and the environment at the U.S. Department of State, along with the September signing of the Framework to Strengthen Infrastructure Finance and Market Building Cooperation. It has also included a visit to Washington, D.C., by a Taiwan government delegation for the inaugural U.S.-Taiwan Economic Prosperity Partnership Dialogue (EPPD) held in late November.

The EPPD was conducted by the U.S. Department of State and the Taiwan Ministry of Economic Affairs. It represents a forward-leaning and wide-ranging platform for the United States and Taiwan to build on existing economic dialogue and cooperation in many key sectors, including semiconductor supply chains, 5G and telecommunications, healthcare, renewable energy, and investment. The two sides also signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that formalized the EPPD and set a five-year plan for continued discourse, consisting of annual high-level talks alternatively in Washington and Taipei. The signed MOU should help maintain the fledgling dialogue despite the upcoming change in U.S. administrations.    [FULL  STORY]

Twentysomething Taiwanese collects nearly NT$100 million in house rental income yearly

Young landlord had to pay NT$1.89 million in supplementary health premiums due to massive real estate holdings

Taiwan News
Date: 2020/12/22
By: George Liao, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

(CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A Taiwanese twentysomething earned nearly NT$100 million (US$3.4 million) from residential real estate rental income last year, according to data from the National Health Insurance Administration (NHIA).

In 2013, the NHIA began to impose a supplementary premium on certain categories of persons for high bonuses, stock dividends, professional fees, interest income, part-time wages, and rental income. The current premium rate is 1.91 percent for people who fall into these categories.    [FULL  STORY]

Taiwan approves TSMC chip plant in Arizona

Focus Taiwan
Date: 12/22/2020
By: Flor Wang and Yang Shu-ching

CNA file photo

Taipei, Dec. 22 (CNA) Taiwan's government on Tuesday approved Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co's (TSMC) planned chip plant in the U.S. state of Arizona — the largest overseas investment by any Taiwanese company in nearly eight years.

The green light was given by the Investment Commission under the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) during an expert meeting earlier the same day.

To pave the way for the planned 5-nanometer 12-inch chip plant, the world's leading contract chip maker set up TSMC Arizona Corporation with US$30 million in December, and is applying for a capital increase of US$3.47 billion in the entity, for a total investment of about US$3.5 billion, the commission said.

TSMC is scheduled to start producing 5-nanometer 12-inch chips at its Arizona plant in the first half of 2024 to meet the strong demand for advanced chips in the North American market, the commission said.    [FULL  STORY]

Tatung chairman exits after 50 days

EXECUTIVES CLASH: Lin Wen-yuan said that he had ‘minor differences of opinion’ with Shanyuan Group chairman Wang Kuang-hsiang, Tatung Co’s leading investor

Taipei Times
Date: Dec 23, 2020
By: Angelica Oung / Staff reporter

Tatung chairman exits after 50 days
EXECUTIVES CLASH: Lin Wen-yuan said that he had ‘minor differences of opinion’ with Shanyuan Group chairman Wang Kuang-hsiang, Tatung Co’s leading investor
By Angelica Oung / Staff reporter
After just 50 days on the job, Tatung Co (大同) chairman Lin Wen-yuan (林文淵) has been dismissed.
Lin made the announcement at a news conference in Taipei yesterday, saying that he “does not know exactly why myself” the reason for his tenure being cut short.
Lin said that he had “minor differences of opinion” with Tatung’s leading investor, Shanyuan Group (三圓建設) chairman Wang Kuang-hsiang (王光祥), who informed Lin on Monday last week that he would be replaced.
Tatung Co chairman Lin Wen-yuan speaks at a news conference in Taipei yesterday.
Photo: Tu Chien-jung, Taipei Times

After just 50 days on the job, Tatung Co (大同) chairman Lin Wen-yuan (林文淵) has been dismissed.

Lin made the announcement at a news conference in Taipei yesterday, saying that he “does not know exactly why myself” the reason for his tenure being cut short.

Lin said that he had “minor differences of opinion” with Tatung’s leading investor, Shanyuan Group (三圓建設) chairman Wang Kuang-hsiang (王光祥), who informed Lin on Monday last week that he would be replaced.

“I asked him why. What did I do wrong? He said: ‘Nothing, but it’s now a different time with different circumstances,’” said Lin, describing a conversation with Wang.

Asia’s Workforce Is Rapidly Aging — And Many Countries Are Not Ready

Brink News
Date: Dec 21, 2020
By: Alicia García-Herrero

An elderly man walks in a street in Tokyo’s Shinbashi area on May 29, 2020. (Photo by Charly TRIBALLEAU / AFP) (Photo by CHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AFP via Getty Images)

Many Asian economies will age more rapidly over the next several decades, including Hong Kong, Japan, Mainland China, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand. For all of these countries, the working-age population peaked in 2015 and will decline at an accelerating rate in the coming decades. By 2050, the proportion of elderly in their populations is expected to increase to 27% — from just 7% in 1995.

A Nataxis report recently explored the consequences of this important trend at the macro- and sectoral-level. It showed that a reduced labor supply creates a drag on growth. But this can be mitigated by higher labor participation, capital investment and policies that address productivity.  

Nonetheless, this is a gravity-defying act.

Aging Gracefully?

With fewer workers and an increased elderly population requiring more savings to sustain spending in retirement, greater pressure on public finances is to be expected. As such, the more prepared an economy can be while still youthful, the more likely it is to age gracefully.     [FULL  STORY]