Formosa move 'won't stop investors'

PUBLISHED : Friday, 04 April, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 04 April, 1997, 12:00am

The influx of Taiwanese investments will not be affected even if Formosa Plastics Group withholds its power plant project in Zhangzhou, officials from Fuzhou, the capital of Fujian province, say.

A vice-director of the administration committee of Fuzhou Economic and Technical Development Zone, Chen Chengmao, said Taiwanese still were the zone's top investors and owned its largest industrial project.

'The influx of Taiwanese investment is the result of economic restructure in Taiwan. I don't think the trend can be stopped by continuous intervention from the Taiwanese government,' Mr Chen said.

Formosa Plastics announced the US$3 billion power plant project on Saturday but on Monday said it might suspend it if the Taiwanese government disapproved.

Taipei has taken various actions to control the flow of capital to China and President Lee Teng-hui is understood to have objected strongly to the power project.

Mr Chen said more Taiwanese companies were seeking to set up in the bonded zone in expectations of direct links with the mainland soon.

Mawei Shipping Co, set up by the zone's administration committee, was reported among five mainland shippers approved to launch direct cross-strait trade.

However, Mr Chen said no company had yet been given approval to conduct direct business.

Wang Yiping, vice-director of Fuzhou Bonded Zone, said a test run on direct shipping links between Fuzhou and Kaohsiung would be conducted on May 20. He said he did not know when direct links would be allowed.

Mr Wang said most Taiwanese investments in the zone were in processing and assembling, and trading.

China has not opened trading business to foreigners, except in the zone.

Mr Wang said 3,900 trading companies had set up in the Fuzhou zone.