Companies have falling fixed asset investments
Companies’ fixed asset investment dropped 11.9 percent over the past year to register at NT$199.1 billion in the first quarter, falling below the NT$200 billion mark for the first time in more than five years, according to a report released by the Ministry of Economic Affairs ( MOEA,
) yesterday. While the amount is lower than the MOEA expected, looking at the first quarter’s figure alone may not enable one to see the whole picture, said a government official.
The decline in amount may be caused by companies’ shift in investment agenda, or simply their tamping down investment activities, the official said.
The MOEA said the electronics parts and components sector made the largest investment — NT$127.5 billion in the first quarter, of which semiconductor fabrication plants had the highest expenditure.
The chemical material business had the smallest investment on the other hand. The amount plummeted 45 percent over the past year to NT$13.3 billion — its lowest level in three years.
There were 1,292 private investment cases filed with the MOEA between January and May. The total amount surged 52 percent in a year to reach NT$577.6 billion, which was in fact 41.26 percent of the NT$1.4 trillion target the MOEA has set for the year.
It is worth noting that nine companies made over NT$10 million in the first five months of the year. They are listed companies Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. ( ), AU Optronics Corp. (
), Innolux Corp. ( ), MediaTek Inc. ( ), Taiwan Star Cellular Co. ( ), United Microelectronics Corp ( ), Farglory Group ( ), Inotera Memories Inc. ( ). Most of the private investment centered in the electronics and information technology sector — NT$226.2 billion, followed by the metal and mechanical industry — NT$145.8 billion, and the consumer goods and chemical industry — NT$134.7 billion.
New Record in Revenues
Thanks to a booming smartphone industry, the manufacturing sector took in more than NT$6.37 trillion in sales in the first quarter, which was a new record compared with the same period over past years.
The top-performing computer, electronics and optical equipment business grossed NT$2.18 trillion, while the electronics parts and components totaled NT$1.27 trillion.
The chemical material business, and the oil and coal industry, plunged 10 percent and 33 percent in revenues, respectively, in the wake of dropping oil prices.
The machinery equipment sector grew 6.4 percent thanks to rising demand for cars, aerospaceand information technology-related products.
The base metal industry dipped 3.6 percent due to oversupply, falling steel prices and the eurozone’s anti-dumping policy.