13 March 2012

Taiwan firms set Luzon expansion

Rep. Raymond L.S. Wang, of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office, met last Tuesday with Taiwanese firms in Central Luzon on their expansion plans amid government moves to perk up the economy.

President Jeff Lin, of Subic Bay Development Center, and Freeport locators discussed loans, tax measures and rental issues at the economic zone.

Ambassador Wang said he would take up their concerns with the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority.

Vice president Huang Ming-Meng, of Tong Lung (Phils.) Metal Industry Co., said the firm ranked fifth worldwide among companies producing locks, earning NT$3.17 billion or around 4.6 billion pesos in 2011 with 850 workers at the Freeport alone.

In Zambales, Johnson Huang introduced organic farming at his Green Gardens on an 11-hectare property turning out fresh produce for a high-end clientele.

Robert Leng, TECO economic director, also joined the visit that included the 560-hectare watermelon farm of Victor Peng in Angeles City.

Known in the community as “King of Watermelons”, he employs technology and plant stock from Taiwan on fertile Pampanga soil to grow sweet, juicy and seedless varieties.

Last month, the Department of Labor and Employment said the Republic of China has extended the cumulative stay of migrant workers in the island.

In a statement, Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz said Filipinos allowed to work for a period of nine years will now be given up to 12 years stay.

“The extension of stay as approved by Taiwan’s legislative branch provides a reprieve to our OFWs, whose work in Taiwan are ending but are still desired by their employers,” she said in a statement.

About 83,000 Filipinos are employed variously as caretakers, maids, factory workers, nursing aides along with those in the fishing industry.

Labor Attaché to Taipei Reydeluz Conferido said the extension did not mean that more migrant labor would be taken in as a result of relaxing the staying period.

“The policies for employing foreign workers have not been eased,” he said.

Last February, Wang met with Baldoz for policy updates. They discussed future cooperation on alleviating placement fees, online recruitment for direct hiring, and attracting more Taiwanese investors. (Manila Standard Today)