TAITRA, Patty Lin: We expect expanding cooperation between the two countries
Patty Lin, Director of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) in Bulgaria,
for South-East European Industrial Market magazine
Present the Association activities in Europe and particularly in South-Eastern Europe, including Bulgaria.
The Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) is a non-profit trade promoting organization in Taiwan. It was founded in 1970 and is sponsored by the government and industry organizations. Headquartered in Taipei, TAITRA has a team of 1300 specialists and operates 5 local offices in Taoyuan, Hsinchu, Taichung, Tainan and Kaohsiung as well as 63 branches worldwide. Together with the Taipei World Trade Center (TWTC) and the Taiwan Trade Center (TTC), TAITRA has formed a global network dedicated to promoting world trade.
TAITRA assists Taiwan’s businesses and manufacturers to reinforce their international competitiveness and to cope with the challenges they face in foreign markets. Its major functions include: Market Research & Information Service, Market Development, Exhibition & Convention Service, Trade Education and Web Service.
TAITRA has 15 branch offices in 13 European countries. For Southeastern Europe, TAITRA has offices in Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey, Italy, Hungary and Ukraine. Every year TAITRA invites thousands of companies from South-Eastern Europe to visit exhibitions in Taiwan. Also, TAITRA brings hundreds of Taiwanese companies to South-Eastern Europe to meet local business partners.
If a Bulgarian or a South-East European company would need assistance to establish or support a partnership with Taiwanese manufacturers how would your Association help?
We strongly recommend Bulgarian and South-East European companies to visit the TIMTOS Show in Taiwan. The Taipei International Machine Tool Show, known as TIMTOS, was held from March 4th to March 9th this year. TIMTOS is jointly organized by the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) and the Taiwan Association of Machinery Industry (TAMI). As one of the world’s largest machine tool trade shows, TIMTOS covered four exhibition halls - Hall 1 and Hall 3 in the TWTC, and Hall 1 and Hall 2 in the Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center.
The Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center Hall 2 officially opened in March 2019 to accommodate more exhibitors. With this new venue, TIMTOS welcomed a total of 1230 exhibitors from 26 countries in 7000 booths, creating a new record and becoming the world’s third largest machine tool trade show in 2019.
TIMTOS has always been an important platform for domestic and international companies to showcase their latest products. It also serves as a springboard to expand their business to the Asian and global markets. Renowned global corporations such as DMG MORI, MAZAK, FANUC, Mitsubishi, Heidenhain, Siemens, Bosch, Schunk, Universal Robots and Haas Automation therefore choose to exhibit at TIMTOS. Moreover, the U.S., Denmark and Turkey participated with national pavilions for the first time, alongside Germany, Switzerland and China that have joined with national pavilions for many editions.
TIMTOS visitors can find products from every facet of the machine tool supply chain, as well as smart technologies and manufacturing solutions. Taiwan has a unique machine tool cluster that comprises more than 16 500 machinery producers and component suppliers that form an integrated supply chain. This supply chain serves as a foundation for companies to efficiently produce high quality and precision machines to fulfil the demands of the aerospace, automobile, medical, high-tech products and consumer electronics industries. Taiwanese machine tool producers are also able to develop smart machines and production lines to adapt to global trends.
In response to the Fourth Industrial Revolution, TIMTOS 2019 highlighted the themes “Industry 4.0 & Smart Manufacturing” and “AI Technology”. The platform showcased digitalized solutions that integrate machine tools, industrial robots, sensors, IoT, big data analysis, machine learning and AI technology to help manufacturers achieve human-machine collaboration and make automated production lines more efficient and resilient.
How do you estimate the Taiwanese Machine Tools business in Bulgaria?
Taiwan’s machine tool industry has an impressive 60-year track record. It has enjoyed the advantages of industrial clustering, access to high-quality talent, excellent location in the Asia-Pacific region, as well as a comprehensive list of IT services that can provide rapid support. Taiwan’s machine tool products represent excellent value and are highly regarded by customers across a wide range of industries around the world.
The output value of Taiwan’s machine tool industry reached USD 4,29 billion, ranked the 7th in the world, and annual export value reached USD 3,35 billion, ranked the 4th largest exporter in the world.
Taiwanese machine tool companies are in a very good partnership with Bulgarian companies. Taiwan was Bulgaria’s second largest import partner in the machine tool business in 2016. We are looking forward to seeing the cooperation between Taiwan and Bulgaria to further expand.
What are the perspectives for a future business development?
In the era of Industry 4.0, “advanced” doesn’t just mean advanced technology, but also implies a focus on providing customer solutions that maximize productivity. Taiwan’s machine tool manufacturers are adept at machine modification and adoption of new technologies and concepts, with an end goal of enhancing customer productivity.
Moreover, Taiwan’s machine tool builders are taping into broader industrial manufacturing sectors with their production. Apart from the astonishing achievements that they have shown in the global automobile manufacturing industry in the last decades, most machine tool builders in Taiwan are keen to be engaged in more fast-evolving emerging sectors such as aerospace, medical, (clean) energy industries and the lightweight future of cars.
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