Overview of best prospect sectors, major infrastructure projects, significant government procurements and business opportunities.
Last Published: 11/8/2019
The Taiwan authorities have strategically identified five industrial technology areas– Internet of Things (IoT, also known as “Asia Silicon Valley”), biomedical, green energy, smart machinery, and defense– as priority industries for development. Also targeted for industrial development under this plan are new agriculture, the circular economy, the digital economy (including semiconductors and IC design), and cultural innovation. In addition, Taiwan is implementing the “Forward-Looking Infrastructure Development Program” which has allocated around $13.9 billion to promote Taiwan’s sustainable development through investment in eight categories: railways, aquatic environments, green energy infrastructure, digital infrastructure, urban and rural development, child care facilities, food safety infrastructure, and human resources infrastructure. The first phase of the expected eight-year initiative is from 2017 through 2020.

Taiwan is a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and observes the WTO Government Procurement Agreement. This provides market opportunities for U.S. firms, including exporters of high value-added components and inputs for high-tech manufacturing (e.g., petrochemical products and electronic production and test equipment), food and other agricultural products, and “American lifestyle” goods and services sought by Taiwan’s affluent population. These range from luxury consumer goods to healthcare products. Taiwan does not require foreign firms to transfer technology, locate in specified areas, or hire a minimum number of local employees as a prerequisite to investment.

Travel and tourism is another area with excellent potential for U.S. firms. The United States is the top long-haul destination for Taiwan’s outbound travelers. This market is expected to continue to grow in 2019. Taiwan is a member of the U.S. Visa Waiver Program (VWP), which enables Taiwan leisure and business travelers to enter the United States for up to 90 days without a visa once they have received authorization though the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA). Taiwan also participates in the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Global Entry Program.

Taiwan’s status as a mature economy, alongside the fact that it has robust trade relations with the United States, means that companies seeking to enter the market must consider their product positioning vis-à-vis existing domestic and foreign competition. Taiwan has an aging population; consequently, demand for products and services targeted at that demographic will grow for the foreseeable future.

In this guide, we have dedicated specific sections to the following industries as the best prospects for U.S. exports: aerospace and defense, education, electric power equipment and energy, machinery and tools, medical devices, and telecommunications equipment. For agriculture-related products, the best prospects for U.S. exports include beef, cheese, coffee, fresh fruit, pet food, poultry meats, tree nuts, and wine and spirits. For U.S. firms interested in learning more about the above-mentioned best prospect reports, please refer to Chapter 8, “Leading Sectors for U.S. Export and Investment.”

Prepared by our U.S. Embassies abroad. With its network of 108 offices across the United States and in more than 75 countries, the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce utilizes its global presence and international marketing expertise to help U.S. companies sell their products and services worldwide. Locate the U.S. Commercial Service trade specialist in the U.S. nearest you by visiting http://export.gov/usoffices.

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Taiwan Trade Development and Promotion