Taiwan to inspire conference industry to boost economy

Jan 27, 2005 Ι Industry In-Focus Ι Furniture Ι By Ken LPM, CENS
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Taipei, Jan. 27, 2005 (CENS)--The Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) will loosen some regulations to inspire domestically held international conferences and trade shows in hopes of bringing Taiwan some business fortunes, and will organize an office after the upcoming Chinese New Year to push the work.

The ministry estimated that an international conference or an international trade show to create at least NT$36 million (US$1.1 million at US$1:NT$32) worth of business opportunities for Taiwan's industries. Based on the estimation, at least NT$1 billion (US$31.2 million) of business opportunities will come to Taiwan in 2008 if the island can hold over 30 international conferences or international trade shows.

For this end, the ministry will increase subsidy for such events to a total of NT$300 million (US$9.3 million) in 2008 from this year's NT$170 million (US$ 5.3 million). Also, to inspire the development of international-conference and trade-show industry the Executive Yuan, Taiwan's Cabinet, has planned to ease restrictions on mainland Chinese attendees and the definitions on international conference and international trade show.

For a long time, Taiwan government has only subsidized organizers of international conferences that have a timeframe of at least three days, 300 attendees from at least five countries including Taiwan itself, and foreign attendees representing 40% of the total. For international trade shows, the subsidization term has been that the show must have foreign exhibitors accounting for at least 10% of the total exhibitors and foreign visitors taking up 5% of the total visitors.

Local private sector has complained the threshold for organizing an event is too high based on the long-standing standards. In reaction, MOEA has decided to lower the criteria for an international conference to the minimum 100 attendees from three countries including Taiwan itself, one-day timeframe and 50 foreign attendees or foreign attendees representing 30% of the total.

For international trade shows, the ministry will subsidize the organizers when the events have at least 200 foreign visitors and exhibitors from six countries including Taiwan itself.

A senior MOEA official said that the ministry would in principle subside each international conference NT$300,000 (US$9,370) as preparatory fee and additional money as show fee.
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