In today’s world where economies are becoming stagnant and countries are looking out for business opportunities to sustain and grow their respective economies, Taiwan’s President, Tsai Ing-wen is strongly emphasising on smart machinery for the economic development of the island country.
Taiwan is already the seventh largest manufacturer of machine tools in the world states the recent TAITRA (Taiwan External Trade Development Council) Report. It is also the fifth largest exporter of machine tools and components and exports to around 138 markets such as China (including Hong Kong), the United States, Thailand, Turkey, Germany, Indonesia, South, Malaysia, Russia and the Netherlands. But to continue this upward growth, it must be in sync with its global competitors by developing smart machines and exploring the ‘Industry 4.0’ concept.
The government intends to insert the Industry 4.0 concept in its small and medium sized industries too. For this purpose, the government has also introduced an integrated platform for Industry 4.0. This is not all! Another significant step in this direction was recently undertaken when a delegation from Taiwan went to Germany to explore the ‘Industry 4.0’ concept and promote technical exchanges and cooperation with German tech firms.
The delegation was organised by Taiwan’s Industrial Development Bureau (IDB) and consisted members from Taiwan Association of Machinery Industry, Taiwan Machine Tool & Accessories Builder’s Association, Metal Industries Research and Development Centre, Precision Machinery Research & Development Center, and Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI). They also visited and interacted with some of the leading companies in this arena such as DMG-Mori, Volkswagen, Mercedes Benz, Lenze SE and Bosch Rexroth, as well as the city government of Bremen, which is now claimed to be the fifth industrial city in Germany.
In addition to this, the delegation also attended the second Taiwan-Germany Smart Machinery Forum that was held in Taipei. At the event, Siemens and Fair Friend Group, one of Taiwan’s leading machine tool makers signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) concerning technical cooperation on smart manufacturing. IDB’s Leu, Taipei representative to Germany Shieh Jhy-wey and a Sachsen State government representative Ralf Borchers were also present at this venture.
Commenting on the significance of the MoU, Leu stated, “Germany is the first country to initiate the Industry 4.0 concept, having amassed abundant R&D momentum in smart manufacturing, while Taiwan boasts of outstanding machine tool and ITC manufacturing industries and plays a crucial role in global industrial supply chains, with many Taiwan makers serving as important partners for many global heavyweight players in the industry.”
He further added that Taiwan and Germany can complement each other in the close integration of providing information and machinery equipment highlighted in the Industry 4.0 era. If enterprises in both countries can carry out bilateral or multilateral cooperation projects, they can jointly explore business opportunities, develop globally leading smart machinery production technologies, and create a digitalized manufacturing world.
Shieh Jhy-wey said, “Germany’s Industry 4.0 applications are mainly designed to boost the computerization, digitalization and smartness of manufacturing operations. The Taiwan Government hopes that both leading Taiwan and German enterprises can join forces to help small-to-medium enterprises in Taiwan incorporate smart manufacturing solutions.”
Shieh continued by saying that Taiwan machinery makers have to achieve constant breakthroughs before they can successfully upgrade their machinery products to the smart level and that Taiwan makers can become good partners for German enterprises, while Germany is a country with great learning value for Taiwan.
The move is expected to prove beneficial for both the countries in the long run. With so many innovative platforms and ideas being implemented by Taiwan, the manufacturing industry should watch out for the island nation!
Perspectives into the Taiwan Machine Tool Industry
· Production of Taiwanese machine tools exports to 138 markets
· 7th largest manufacturer in the world
· 6th highest machine tools industry per capita consumption in the world
· 5th largest machine tools exporter in the world
· 3rd largest exporter and manufacturer of ball screws
· 2nd highest machine tools production per capita in the world