April 2012  
TIER’s adjusted 2012 growth forecast downward
Taiwanese exports contracted in Q1 2012
The global uncertainties and deteriorating conditions impacted on Taiwan’s trade performance especially in the first quarter of 2012. However, a more optimistic second quarter can be anticipated due to the improving business atmosphere worldwide. The European sovereign debt crisis seems contained for the time being. The US economy is on the road to gradual recovery with data signifying slightly stronger momentum. Japan strived to rise from the devastating disaster in 2011, and its ongoing efforts have been considered as a positive thrust that is somewhat sufficient to offset China’s potential soft landing. Therefore, Taiwanese trade in Q2 will be more likely to outperform Q1 with respect to healthier global conditions. Nevertheless, the remaining concern will be on the price hike government policies on fuel and electricity, which might hurt Taiwan’s domestic consumption to a certain extent.
The exports in total of USD 26.34 billion contracted by 3.2% in March Year-on-Year.
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Taiwan's suffering index is far below the Asian average of 11%
Taiwan's suffering index dropped to 5% last year, which is far below the Asian average of 11 % in the latest annual Gallup survey of 157 countries. The index measures where the respondants' perceptions stand on a ladder scale with steps numbered from 0 to 10, where 0 represents the worst possible life. Respondants feel they are suffering about their current life at 4 or below and expecting their life would be the same in five-year time. (Note: Suffering index is different from index of misery.)

President Ma: ECFA talks expected to be completed in 2-year time
President Ma Ying-jeou yesterday mentioned that the government would complete negotiations on the cross-strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) with China in two-year time as well as deepen the economic and trade relationships with other countries to improve Taiwan's economic competitiveness. Ma expects the ECFA to help facilitate the country's goal of signing free-trade agreements (FTA) with major trade partners and join the Trans-Pacfic Partnership(TPP).

The Taiwan International Ports Corporation commence operation of Taiwan’s four main commercial ports in Keelung, Taichung, Kaohsiung and Hualien in March
The Ministry of Finance (MOF) issues new direction to simplify tax collection procedures and make tax filing easier for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)
The Ministry of Education (MOE) relaxes the requirements of internship to attract more Chinese students to study in Taiwan
Taiwan Economic Research Monthly
The impacts of global free economic zone establishments on Taiwan's economy
Korean free economic zone: Incheon Free Economic Zone
Japan's free economic zone evaluation and its blueprint
The introduction of Singapore free trade zone development and its inspiration for Taiwan
The impacts of free trade zone establishments on Taiwan's logistics development
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