Taiwan hopes to bolster its hi-tech standing by renewing its focus on semiconductor manufacturing. The country aims to capture a global market share of 8 to 10 per cent by 2005. Government bodies and local computer and chip-makers in Taiwan met at Silicon Day '97 during last week's Computex exhibition. It was Taiwan's first international forum on the foundation and future development of its semiconductor industry. Included in the two-day event was a tour to Hsinchu science-based industrial park, Taiwan's Silicon Valley. Coinciding with the government's Silicon Island 2005 project, another park for hi-tech development will be founded in Taiwan. The 425-acre Aspire Park was established by Acer, which plans to invest US$4 billion. It will take 10 years to complete and will be the first privately run industrial park in Taiwan. Acer and three Taiwan companies, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing, United Microelectronics Corp and Mosel Vitelic, have been selected among Asia's 50 most competitive companies. All are involved in silicon wafer fabrication in the Hsinchu park. Last year was a disastrous for chip makers taking part in DRam (dynamic random-access memory) manufacturing as chip prices fell about 80 per cent. Most companies including Acer are making efforts to upgrade their current 16-megabit DRam production expertise to 64 megabits for better profit margins. Last year, Taiwan's semiconductor output was US$3.4 billion, making it the world's fifth-largest semiconductor manufacturer with a 3.2 per cent market share.