Taiwan food makers attract attention abroad



TAIPEI — Taiwanese food suppliers have been a center of attention for buyers in Malaysia and Singapore during exhibits in those countries this month, the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) said yesterday.

A delegation of 99 Taiwanese food makers set up shop at the Food & Hotel Asia 2014 trade show in Singapore April 8-11, where they won some US$11.12 million in orders on the spot, according to TAITRA.

The government-sponsored trade organization forecast US$36.82 million in orders could pour in over the next year after the conclusion of the biennial exhibition in Singapore.

It estimated that another US$11.79 million could come in orders from Malaysia over the next year following the conclusion of a visit with potential buyers in Kuala Lumpur April 12-15, which secured US$2.30 million in orders.

In Singapore, Taiwanese exhibitors set up a special pavilion to highlight alcoholic goods, halal food items and deep-sea seafood.

Beer exports in particular caught a lot of attention. Taiwanese beer sold to the city-state could grow 50-100 percent in 2014, according to TAITRA, after the Singapore-Taiwan trade agreement takes affect April 19.

The Agreement between Singapore and the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu on Economic Partnership (ASTEP) grants duty-free status to Taiwanese alcohol exports. Anticipation over the trade pact also drew other potential buyers looking to take advantage of reduced barriers, TAITRA said.

The smaller delegation that visited Malaysia, meanwhile, was comprised of 20 food suppliers. They held 200 meetings with more than 100 importers and distributors in Kuala Lumpur, visited markets in the city and took part in MIHAS 2014, a trade exhibition on halal foods, TAITRA said.