“Thai and Taiwanese people are culturally similar, which makes it easy to connect and form relationships with Thai people and Thai companies.”
The President of the Thai-Taiwan Business Association shares his perspective about the attractiveness of investing in Thailand and a recently-launched project between the two countries.
Taiwan is heavily investing in businesses based in Thailand. In 2017, over U$14.3 billion was invested from Taiwan in various industries in Thailand, and the prospect for future trade cooperation is bright.
Shu-tien Liu, President of the Thai-Taiwan Business Association (TTBA), has been doing business in Thailand for almost three decades, as well as promoting business cooperation between the two nations through various projects, including a brand-new expo introduced this August.
“TTBA has been established for 27 years, and currently there are about 150,000 Taiwanese living in Thailand. Five thousand Taiwanese companies operate in Thailand, doing business in various industries, such as automotive and parts, plastics and electronics,” said Liu.
He revealed that Taiwan and Thailand have maintained a steady industrial cooperation; Taiwan is the third largest importer of machine tools, the fourth largest importer of plastic machinery, and the seventh largest importer of food machinery from Thailand.
“One of the key strengths of Thailand is the country’s strong automotive industry that offers numerous business opportunities here. Also, Thailand is working on several large infrastructure projects, such as major roads and railways that will further boost the country’s domestic demand,” said Liu.
It is not just government projects and infrastructure that are leading foreigners to invest in Thailand.
“A large number of Taiwanese companies chose Thailand due to the ease of doing business here, thanks to Board of Investment (BOI) incentives,” he said. “Moreover, Thai and Taiwanese people are culturally similar, which makes it easy to connect and form relationships with Thai people and Thai companies.”
In August, the Bureau of Foreign Trade (MOEA), the Taiwan External Trade Development Council, the Thai-Taiwan Business Association (TTBA) and the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) launched Taiwan Expo 2018 for the first time in Thailand under the theme “Let’s Tie Together” to present smart living technology, arts and cultural exchange, as well as to promote trade cooperation between Thailand and Taiwan.
“I think Taiwan Expo 2018 served as a bridge between Thai and Taiwanese investors to exchange views on business and trade opportunities through business matchmaking and industry forums,” said Liu. “Also, innovative products in the seven highlight showcases – Smart City, Green Tech, Health Care, Culture, Talents & Tourism, Agricultural Tech, and Good Living – were presented by 210 exhibitors at the fair.”
Looking forward, Liu says he is certain there will be greater cooperation between Thailand and Taiwan.
“Businesspeople from Taiwan know that Thailand is a good destination for investment, while the TTBA advises Thai businesspeople on opportunities for business in Taiwan, and we try to connect them together for the benefit of both countries.”