Robust smartphone demand lifts Taiwan's export orders

Oct 21, 2013
People walk past a Foxconn recruitment point in Shenzhen, south China's Guangdong province, on February 22, 2013

Taiwan's export orders in September grew 2.0 percent year-on-year, the third monthly rise in succession, on strong European and US demand for smartphones, the government said Monday.

Export orders—orders filed to manufacturers one or two months ahead of delivery—are a key indicator for the island's -reliant economy.

The September figure came in at $38.4 billion, following a 0.5 percent rise in both July and August, the economic ministry said.

Orders for handheld and related devices grew 16.2 percent from a year earlier to $11 billion due to the launch of new products. Such orders from Europe increased 29.4 percent from a year earlier and those from the United States rose 21.4 percent, the ministry said in a statement.

The increasing orders for smartphones also boosted demand for semiconductors, it added.

A large segment of the orders went to Hon Hai Precision, the world's largest computer components manufacturer, also known as Foxconn, which assembles products for Apple—including the iPhone—as well as for Sony and Nokia.

Total orders from the United States were $9.8 billion, up 7.0 percent from a year earlier, and those from Europe rose 15.6 percent to $7.4 billion.

Workers walk in front of Hon Hai's headquarters in Tuchung city, northern Taiwan on June 7, 2010

Orders from China including Hong Kong—Taiwan's biggest export market—shed 6.1 percent to $9.6 billion.

The government in August revised its full-year 2013 growth forecast downwards to 2.31 percent, citing a weaker global economic outlook and slowing exports and consumer spending in the second half.

The economy grew 1.32 percent in 2012, its slowest pace in three years.

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