Equipment for 32 mask production lines to be fully delivered soon

Photo courtesy of Greenpeace
Photo courtesy of Greenpeace

TAIPEI (CNA) — The equipment needed for 32 new surgical face mask production lines in Taiwan is expected to be fully delivered soon, the chairman of the Taiwan Machine Tool & Accessory Builders’ Association (TMBA) said Friday.

Hsu Wen-hsien (許文憲) made the comments while inspecting the latest batch of equipment being delivered by Chang Hong Machinery Co. in New Taipei’s Wugu District, one of the two companies that are assembling the production lines.

According to Hsu, 15 of the 32 lines are assembled by Chang Hong, while NCM Nonwoven Converting Machinery Co. in New Taipei’s Yingge District are responsible for the 17 others.

So far, 13 mask production lines have been completed by NCM, with equipment for the final four remaining lines expected to be delivered by next week, he said.

Due to the surging demand for surgical face masks as result of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) announced March 5 that it had decided to build the 32 additional lines, with all necessary equipment due to be delivered by the end of March.

The decision came after the Cabinet last month approved a plan to build 60 production lines to help meet the country’s mask supply shortage.

Even if they operate at just 80 percent capacity, the 92 lines will be able to churn out a daily output of 9 million of the masks, which will be just sufficient for domestic demand, the TMBA chairman said.