“We don’t have any excuse not to succeed”, ITRI’s Steve Chi.

Picture top-right: TBC’s Martin offers a book to Taipei City Government Department of Economic Development’s Division Chief, LEE Chang-Hui

Taipei Municipal Self-Government Ordinance for Industrial Development Conference

Provided by: Department of Economic Development, Taipei City Government, co-sponsored by ITRI

”Taipei Industrial Development Subsidies & Incentives Project ” is aimed at encouraging businesses to invest in Taipei and offers subsidies and R&D subsidies to reach this goal.
Taipei City is commited to support the foreign companies/investors to initiate a business in Taipei.

A good sign for foreign investment from the government

For the first time this conference was in English only, with presentations from ITRI, InvesTaiwan, Taiwan USA (TUSA) and the Taipei City Government Department of Economic Development’s top managers, only in English, which is a key element to attract even more foreigners to invest and start businesses in Taiwan.

The purpose of the conference was made really clear: ” Attract foreign investment” said ITRI’s General Director Commmercialization and Industrialization Services M. Liu.

Then during 3 hours the different administrations helping SMEs and bigger businesses make business in Taiwan, with experiences sharing, descriptions of the incentives, tips for foreigners, requirements to apply for subsidies, presentation of services provided.

Taiwan’s Small and Medium Entreprises’ ecosystem

The ecosystem is apparently extremely friendly to technological businesses willing to start their activity in Taiwan. However, we observed two major drawbacks:

Who am I supposed to talk to?

The tricky part is still to differentiate the means and goals of each of the administration presenting before us. We are not lacking of organizations willing to help Small and Medium Entreprises, more or less affiliated to the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA), among which the Small and Medium Entreprise Administration (SMEA), InvesTaiwan, Taiwan USA (TUSA), the Department of Economic Development of Taipei City, the Industrial Technology Research Institute. They all provide a range of services and help businesses with subsidies and incentives in various sectors, but when asking one of the officials from these bureau “Who is doing what?”, the answer was :” I’m afraid you will have to figure it out yourself.”

Taiwan’s government needs to market itself even more

This is not new, one of Taiwan’s biggest challenges in the next few years is to better market itself. We have seen it on Taipei 101’s fireworks, as the motto said: “It is time for Taiwan.” For this event, again the first ever English Only conference for Industrial Development, the main target of foreign industrials was not reached. The 70 seats venue allocated to the event was eventually full, but only 30 to 40 people were part of the core target of this event. The means allocated to communication and marketing are not paralleled with means allocated to incentives and subsidies. The Bureau InvesTaiwan does not advertise abroad even if its only focus is foreign investment.

As ITRI’s Steve Chi said, Taiwan has no excuse not to succeed. Indeed the incentives and the friendliness shown in this event lead no doubt that the government is committed to help foreign entrepreneurs. Yet, the access to this goldmine is hardly reachable and only a few acknowledged foreigners are able to receive these highly valuable pieces of informationable. It is then our duty to relay the information to foreigners.

Therefore we were really happy to offer 3 books to the very first people who asked questions at the Q&A session.

If you missed the conference for Industrial Development

In a nutshell, here are some of the information provided (the presentation will soon be online on our website):

– Please note that All the incentives provided are only available for companies registered in Taipei City

– If you have launched/are launching a startup, you might be interested in calling this number provided by the Small and Medium Entreprises Administration (SMEA) to help you with any question regarding administrative issues (English speaking hotline): 0800-589-168. Last year 10 000 calls were answered by their 150 consultants;

– Taiwan has 130+ incubators all over the island, with over 1,800 start-ups helped so far (over the past few decades);

– Appearance of Accelerators (in other words more powerful incubators), provided with Mentoring, Funding, Networking;

– Industries involved in the Strategy Development Industry Program:

1. Recreation and Tourism

2. Biotechnology

3. Information Services

4. Telecommunications

5. Cultural Creative

6. Health Care

7. Sports and Leisure

8. Convention and Exhibition

9. Renewable Energy

10. Other industries promoted and supported by the City Government.

– Incentives Subsidies can help you fund several Items:

1. Job training programs

2. New hired employee’s payroll

3. Annual housing tax and land-value tax

4. Rental Subsidy for providing for the assets located within the city

5. Interest payments subsidy

6. City-owned real estate subsidy

Please contact us for further information.