China’s ‘flat panel queen’ places US$4.5 bil. order



BEIJING–China’s “flat panel queen” Bai Weimin has pledged to purchase 27 million flat panels from Taiwan this year, up 15 percent from last year, but the amount will still be kept at US$4.5 billion due to a price slump, Taiwan’s External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) Chairman Wang Chi-kang said Saturday.

Bai, deputy director of the China Video Industry Association, also pledged that Taiwan’s flat panel manufacturers will receive tax treatment “by no means inferior to that of South Korea” as China is mulling whether to raise import tariffs on flat panels from 5 percent to over 8 percent, Wang said. Wang made the remarks to reporters while commenting on visits he made to the Ministry of Commerce, the Council for the Promotion of International Trade, the Taiwan Affairs Office, and the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits, as well as Bai’s association, between April 23 and April 25. He said that China’s purchases this year will be mainly 4K2K flat panels, accounting for at least 20 percent of the total. Wang also invited Bai to visit Taiwan to attend Computex Taipei 2014 and a cross-strait cooperation conference on the display industry in June. Bai has been invited by TAITRA to visit Taiwan every year since 2009. Wang also said that Chinese officials were surprised that a cross-strait service trade pact, which was signed last June and is still stalled in the Legislature, has met with such widespread opposition in Taiwan.