Over 46 international media and 30 global buyers and agents participated in Taiwan's International Press Conference on September 18th to discover the latest developments in Taiwan's global trends.
As the world's largest machine tool exhibition, EMO Hannover 2023, kicked off on September 18th in Germany, Taiwan's Smart Machinery Overseas Promotion Project, organized by the Bureau of Foreign Trade, Ministry of Economic Affairs, and executed by the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), hosted a press conference and panel discussion on the same day on-site. High interest was focused on how Taiwan's machine tool industry approaches semiconductor, electric vehicle, and sustainable energy industries, further highlighting Taiwan's robust R&D capabilities and compact industrial supply chain advantages.
Taiwan's Supply Chain Takes the Initiative to Capture Global Attention
In 2022, Taiwan's machine tool output value reached approximately US$3.93 billion, ranking seventh in the world, with an export value of US$3 billion, ranking fifth globally. As EMO Hannover returned to the stage, Simon Wang, the President & CEO of TAITRA, led the Taiwan Smart Machinery press conference event, joined by leading organizations in Taiwan's machine tool industry, including the Taiwan Association of Machinery Industry (TAMI), Taiwan Machine Tool & Accessory Builders' Association (TMBA), Taiwan Cutting Tool Engineering Association (TACEA), Elegant Female Leaders in Machinery Industry (ELIMI), and the Taichung City Government, where the industrial cluster is located.
During the panel discussion, these leaders conveyed Taiwan's capabilities in meeting the diverse needs of various application fields. For instance, in the semiconductor sector, Taiwan can supply advanced processes as well as essential peripheral equipment for chip production. After years of experience with foundries like TSMC, Taiwanese suppliers can meet international demand for both direct and indirect processes, with companies such as Tongtai, Quaser, FFG, HIWIN, and more. In response to the rapidly growing demand for electric vehicles, Taichung has become a hub for key electric vehicle components, forming a comprehensive electric vehicle industry chain covering parts, modules, system integration, and even complete vehicles. Well-known electric vehicle brands, including Tesla, have chosen several Taichung manufacturers as their supply chain partners.
Global Market and Supply Chain Advantages
The panel also revealed Taiwan's global market strategies and smart manufacturing capabilities developed in recent years amidst an unstable economy and increased labor market uncertainty. "Under the trend of supply chain relocation, diversifying markets is a necessary task for Taiwan's machine tool industry," said Patrick Chen, Chairman of TMBA. He emphasized that the global political and economic situation's instability has led to a shift from globalization and internationalization to shorter supply chains and localization in supply chain management.
In response to supply chain restructuring and production base relocation, machine tool and accessory manufacturers have not only responded to the policy of Taiwanese businesses returning to invest in Taiwan but have also reallocated resources and explored new directions in global partnerships. For example, YCM has partnered with TRIMILL to strengthen one-stop machining solutions for mold, automotive, and aerospace industries; FFG acquired Germany's MAG Group to enhance its presence in the automotive sector and European market; and Tongtai acquired France's PCI-Scemm and Austria's ANGER for technology cooperation and market channel sharing.
David Chuang from TAMI stressed the importance of machinery manufacturers continuing to upgrade and transform themselves. Whether in R&D or manufacturing for semiconductors, green energy, electric vehicles, or aerospace industries, excellence in machinery technology and expertise is vital. The development of these application industries also propels the progress of the precision machinery industry, and close cooperation between industries demonstrates the strength and competitiveness of Taiwan's manufacturing sector.
This year's EMO exhibition featured more than 1,750 exhibitors from 42 countries. Among them, 144 Taiwanese exhibitors ranked fourth among participating countries. Taiwanese exhibitors showcased a series of forward-looking concept products to the world, including automation combined with green manufacturing, intelligent streamlining of machining processes, and integration of high-performance peripheral smart components. On the panel stage, Taiwan's leaders also emphasized that Taiwan's smart machinery field has evolved from single automation equipment to comprehensive smart solutions.
At EMO 2023, Taiwan provides an open platform to highlight its active participation in semiconductor front-end equipment, common industrial communication protocols, upgraded components, and other innovative ideas aligned with global trends. In contrast to the slower economic situation faced by global markets, Taiwan has once again reaffirmed its active attitude in exploring different machining application possibilities to global buyers and media. This further strengthens its position in the global value chain, paving the way for a more digital and greener manufacturing future.