Economics Minister Shen Briefs AmCham

Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin called on AmCham Taipei on July 13 to brief members of the Chamber leadership on the status of 2018 Taiwan White Paper issues related to MOEA. Accompanying the Minister were officials from MOEA’s Investment Commission, Bureau of Energy, Intellectual Property Office, Department of Commerce, Bureau of Foreign Trade, and Industrial Development Bureau.

Representing AmCham were Chairman Albert Chang, President William Foreman, Vice Chairman Vincent Shih, Governors Tim Ju and Revital Golan, Supervisor Petra Jumpers, and Senior Directors Don Shapiro and Amy Chang.

AmCham Taipei leadership with MOEA officials.

The Minister’s one-hour briefing covered the following topics:

  • Energy policy. Shen provided assurance that energy supply would be sufficient – and utility prices remain reasonable – as Taiwan transforms to an energy mix that eliminates nuclear power generation by 2015.
  • Copyright piracy by overseas websites. The government is seeking to crack down through international cooperation and reducing infringing websites’ access to advertising revenue, but is reluctant to engage in site blocking in the absence of a legal basis and public consensus.
  • Copyright Law amendments. MOEA has been consulting with stakeholders on ways to protect OTT service providers against infringement by illegal apps and websites. It will also work with the National Communications Commission and Ministry of Education on additional ways to curb the growing volume of violations through illegal streaming mobile apps and front-loaded set-top boxes.
  • The Intellectual Property & Licensing Committee’s suggestion to raise the minimum compensation to NT$30,000 per infringement for situations where the actual damage is difficult to prove. MOEA has decided to keep the minimum at NT$10,000.
  • Enhancing Taiwan’s startup ecosystem. MOEA has been liberalizing restrictions on the types of permissible corporate shareholdings. It has also been cooperating with the National Development Fund to provide more tax incentives for venture capital firms to be active in this market.
  • Expanding facilities for conferences and exhibitions. The scheduled opening next March of Hall 2 of the Nangang Exhibition Center will greatly enhance Taiwan’s capability in this field.
  • Treating investment applications by private equity (PE) firms. These investments are welcome and not considered any differently from other applications.

Minister Shen offered to meet with AmCham regularly in the future to discuss these and any other pertinent issues in more detail.

2018 AmCham Doorknock – June 18-22

The Chamber’s annual “Doorknock” visit to Washington DC this year took place between June 18 and 22. The group held a total of 45 meetings, including calls on the State Department, Commerce Department, National Security Council, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, dozens of Congressional offices, and leading think tanks. The delegation, which was led by AmCham President William Foreman and Vice Chairman Leo Seewald, was also invited for tea by Taiwan’s representative in Washington, Stanley Kao, at the Twin Oaks estate owned by Taiwan.

Delegation members visit the State Department.

The Doorknock group with Commerce Department officials.

A central purpose of the Doorknock was to remind contacts in Washington of “why Taiwan matters,” including its rank as the United States’ 11th largest trading partner, integral role in the supply chain of major American technology companies, vibrant democracy, and sharing of basic American values. The delegation also urged the U.S. government to schedule regular consultations with Taiwan under the bilateral Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) umbrella, explore entering into negotiations for a bilateral trade agreement, and send more high-level American officials on visits to Taiwan. In both executive and legislative branch offices, the group heard expressions of desire to deepen the economic relationship between the United States and Taiwan, especially if existing trade differences surrounding the export of U.S. meat products could be resolved.

The delegation was received at the U.S. Trade Representative.

Delegation members with Congressman Gregg Harper (R-MS).

Besides Foreman and Seewald, other members of the delegation included Wendy Lin, General Manager of Johnson & Johnson Taiwan and a co-chair of AmCham’s Pharmaceutical Committee; Petra Jumpers, General Manager of Eli Lilly and Co. (Taiwan) and another Pharmaceutical Committee co-chair; Christine Kuan, External Affairs & Market Access Director at Bristol-Myers Squibb (Taiwan), representing the Public Health Committee; Natasha Lai, Senior New Product Planning & Government Affairs Manager for Eli Lilly (Taiwan); T.K. Lo, Technical & Regulatory Manager at Amway Taiwan; Lynn Cinelli, Director of Emerging Markets Public Policy for Merck Sharp & Dohme; Nathan Kaiser of the law firm Eiger; Don Shapiro, AmCham Senior Director and Editor-in-Chief of Taiwan Business TOPICS; and Any Chang, AmCham Senior Director for Government and Public Affairs.

For many meetings they were joined by the Washington-based representatives of AmCham member companies or cooperative organizations, including AdvaMed, Amway, Bechtel, Cigna, Herbalife, Medtronic, Microsoft, Prudential, and Versum Materials.

While traversing the halls of Congress, the AmCham Doorknockers met a large delegation of Taiwanese-American businesspeople from the World Taiwanese Chambers of Commerce who were on a similar mission.

Deep Learning: Changing the Game for Problem Solving

Amidst the “machine-learning revolution,” information processing plays a crucial role in transforming products and services to shape a better world. In recent years, machine learning has not only accelerated how technology impacts consumers, it has also created profound solutions for society-wide problems. Leading tech companies such as Google are heavily invested in artificial intelligence (AI) with teams dedicated to research and development of computing systems, which involves understanding of data science, modeling, and distributed computation techniques.

On July 6, AmCham Taipei’s Technology Committee hosted a luncheon presentation at the Shangri-La’s Far Eastern Plaza Hotel by Ed Chi, Principal Scientist and Research Lead at Google AI, on the subject of “How Advances in Deep Learning are Changing How We Solve Problems.

From left to right: AmCham Taipei Governor Anita Chen, Head of Public Policy and Government Affairs, Google Taiwan; AmCham President William Foreman; AmCham’s Technology Committee Co-Chair, Hans Huang, Vice President, Corning Display Technologies Taiwan; Speaker Ed Chi, Principal Scientist and Research Lead, Google AI; and AmCham’s Governor and Technology Committee Co-Chair, Revital Golan, CEO, Anemone Ventures.

Chi cited a few examples of machine-learning applications that are transforming industries and how we live:

  • Improving traffic and transportation conditions by enabling Google’s self-driving cars to “see” with a 3% error rate.
  • Preventing diseases through early intervention using automated analysis of retinal imaging.
  • Improving healthcare services by using medical records to make predictions about patients’ health and identify risks.
  • Aiding the design of new medicines by using neural simulation to understand how molecules interact with one another.
  • Enabling better communication by utilizing neural machine translation to learn over time how to produce real-time voice translations that sound more natural and human-like.

In closing, Chi highlighted that Taiwan’s robust semiconductor supply chain industry will be critical in the machine-learning revolution. With its cutting-edge technology and rich history in semiconductor manufacturing, Taiwan is well positioned to take the lead in fostering advancements in machine learning and growing trends in AI, he said.

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境外電商跨境銷售電子勞務課徵所得稅法令介紹

AmCham Taipei Tax Committee held a luncheon on July 5 at the Regent Taipei.

境外電商跨境銷售電子勞務課徵所得稅法令介紹– this event was conducted in Mandarin.

近年來電子商務交易成長快速,頻繁的網路交易、或跨境交易除對傳統產業帶來衝擊外,亦使現行的課稅制度臨嚴峻的挑戰。

臺灣財政部於107年1月2日發布2號解釋令,針對外國營利事業跨境銷售電子勞務之來源收入認定、所得計算、申報繳納程序等制定課稅規範。

本次擬針對前開新頒法令進行專題簡報,以介紹相關規定。

When: July 5, 2018 (12 PM – 2 PM)

Where: Regent Taipei, 4F VIP 1  / 台北晶華酒店 貴賓廳 一 4F

Speaker: 林聖慧 股長 / 財政部臺北國稅局

From left to right: AmCham Taipei Tax Committee Co-Chair Josephine Peng, Senior Counselor, Lee and Li, Attorneys-at-Law; Speaker 林聖慧 股長 財政部臺北國稅局; Tax Committee Co-Chair Cheli Liaw, Partner, Deloitte & Touche

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Note: AmCham events are intended primarily for AmCham members and their guests. Many events are open to members’ guests and other non-members, but the attendance of any non-member must be approved in advance. AmCham reserves the right not to admit a non-member to any event without explanation.

AmCham Taipei Honors Departing AIT Director Kin Moy

Chamber members gathered in the ballroom of the Sherwood Taipei on July 3 for a luncheon program bidding farewell to Kin Moy as he prepares to return to Washington at the end of his three-year tour as Director of the American Institute of Taiwan.

AmCham Chairman Albert Chang thanked Moy, the chief American representative in Taiwan in the absence of formal diplomatic relations, for being “an unceasing friend and supporter of the Chamber.” Chang lauded Moy for his stellar accomplishments during his tenure, including:

  • The completion and inauguration of AIT’s new office complex in Neihu, a tangible symbol of the enduring friendship between the U.S. and Taiwan.
  • Expanded economic ties (major Taiwanese investment projects in the U.S., promoting U.S. exports, and large Taiwan delegations to SelectUSA in Washington).
  • The admission last year of Taiwan travelers to the United States’ Global Entry program (only the third U.S. partner in Asia with this honor).
  • Cooperative and training programs in areas like the digital economy, environmental protection, public health, women’s empowerment and entrepreneurship, and humanitarian assistance.

Chang concluded, however, that “what makes Kin Moy so special” is much more than those achievements. Using a number of anecdotes as examples, he cited Moy’s warmth, humor, and accessibility.

AmCham Taipei President William Foreman presents gift to Director Kin Moy of the American Institute of Taiwan.

In his remarks, Moy expressed appreciation to AmCham for its close cooperation with AIT, for providing valuable briefings to visiting dignitaries from the U.S., and for holding impressive events such as the annual Hsieh Nien Fan banquet and American Ball. He noted that AmCham provides AIT with many “great ideas” for furthering the bilateral economic relationship – ideas that AIT relays back to Washington.

Moy referred to the recent dedication ceremony for the new AIT office complex as a “historic occasion,” as it confirms that the “U.S. commitment to Taiwan is about the long term.”

On the morning of the AmCham luncheon, Moy was presented with the Order of the Brilliant Star by President Tsai Ing-wen in recognition of his contribution to U.S.-Taiwan relations.

Moy’s successor as AIT director, William Brent Christensen, is expected to arrive later in the summer. He previously served as AIT’s deputy director from 2012 to 2015. His deputy, who has already taken office, is Raymond Greene, who was previously posted in Taipei as deputy chief of the AIT political section from 2001 to 2005.

Director Kin Moy of the American Institute of Taiwan; AmCham Taipei President William Foreman; AmCham Chairman Albert Chang; and AmCham Board members Joyce Lee, Petra Jumpers, Anita Chen, Vincent Shih, William Farrell, Daniel Tseng, and Joanne Tsai.

Strengthening Intellectual Property Protection

Taiwan’s economic growth has long benefited from substantial foreign direct investment, especially since Taiwan is an important hub in the high-technology sector. In an effort to continue attracting foreign investment and collaboration, particularly on advanced technologies, the Taiwan Intellectual Property Office (TIPO) under the Ministry of Economic Affairs has been working continuously to optimize IP protection and establish a sound IP environment.

AmCham Taipei’s Intellectual Property & Licensing Committee invited Hong Shu-min, TIPO’s Director-General, to share with attendees TIPO’s initiatives to improve IP protection. The Chinese-language luncheon program was entitled “不斷前進的智慧財產局” (“Continuously Strengthen IPR Protection”) and was held on June 22 at the Sherwood Taipei.

Director-General Hong’s presentation noted that the volume of patent application numbers had been in decline over the past few years. Last year, however, TIPO reported a 2% increase over the previous year, receiving a total of 73,791 patent applications. Besides giving an overview of Taiwan’s patent and trademark application status, Hong cited TIPO’s efforts to reduce patent backlogs, improve examination quality, and strengthen trade secret protection.

From left to right: Hong Shu-min, Director General of TIPO, Ministry of Economic Affairs and AmCham Intellectual Property and Licensing Committee Co-Chair Peter J. Dernbach, Partner, Winkler Partners

The Director-General explained various programs supported by the government to assist the private sector with IPR protection:

  • Training and coursework designed to help companies with application procedures, and consultation services to help companies develop corporate IP strategies.
  • The operation of regional service offices in Hsinchu, Taichung, Tainan, and Kaohsiung to provide guidance to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
  • A one-stop shop website developed to educate and inform SMEs about protecting their IP through online resources.
  • A platform that provides information on Southeast Asian countries’ Intellectual Property Rights, as well as guidance to companies looking to expand into emerging markets.

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Note: AmCham events are intended primarily for AmCham members and their guests. Many events are open to members’ guests and other non-members, but the attendance of any non-member must be approved in advance. AmCham reserves the right not to admit a non-member to any event without explanation.

Power Emails: How to get twice done in half the time

E-mails are supposed to be fast and easy, but in the modern workplace they can easily become a hassle. With limited time but ever accumulating messages, time is wasted and misunderstandings arise when online communication is not conducted properly. Managers and employees need to fully know how to utilize the power of e-mail, whether it is through adequate software training, email writing skills, or identifying the right type of communication.

On June 15th, AmCham Taipei invited William Zyzo, Managing Director of Z&A Knowledge Solutions and Advisor to AmCham Taipei’s Advanced Learning Lab, to the Lincoln Room to lead the seminar entitled “POWER Emails: How to get twice done in half the time”. To boost teamwork and involvement amongst attendees, Zyzo integrated e-mail style workshops and encouraged dynamic discussion regarding what types of communication guests use in their workplace.

Agenda included:

  1. How to manage the time-eating beast called email
  2. How to systematically improve your writing quality
  3. How to use the POWER Framework using actual business cases
  4. Where to get more help after the seminar

The Lincoln Room is made possible by the generosity of a number of sponsoring companies:

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Note: AmCham events are intended primarily for AmCham members and their guests. Many events are open to members’ guests and other non-members, but the attendance of any non-member must be approved in advance. AmCham reserves the right not to admit a non-member to any event without explanation.

2018 Messages to Washington

Following release each year of the Taiwan White PaperAmCham Taipei sends a delegation to Washington D.C. for what is called the “Washington Doorknock.” This year’s Doorknock will take place June 18-22, and will involve more than 40 meetings with U.S. government officials from the executive and legislative branch offices, think tanks, and others interested in the U.S.-Taiwan economic relationship. It is always an excellent opportunity for AmCham to provide briefings on the state of the business climate in Taiwan and to learn about the latest developments in U.S. policy toward Taiwan and the Asian region.

The Messages to Washington section of the Taiwan White Paper outlines the essential points AmCham wishes to share with the U.S. government, as shown in the accompanying infographicDownload the complete Taiwan White Paper.

 

AmCham Meets with Washington Visitors

Over breakfast at the Grand Hyatt Taipei on June 13, members of the AmCham Taipei leadership met with Assistant Secretary of State for Educational & Cultural Affairs Marie Royce and other U.S. dignitaries who were in Taiwan for the dedication ceremony of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) office complex.

Besides Assistant Secretary Royce, the visitors included Caroline Casagrande, Special Advisor to the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs; Washington-based AIT Chairman James Moriarty; AIT Washington Managing Director John Norris; and State Department Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Office of Taiwan Coordination Director Jim Heller. From AIT in Taipei, Economic Chief Jeff Horwitz and Deputy Economic Chief Mike Pignatello also attended.

The group was welcomed by AmCham Taipei Chairman Albert Chang; AmCham President William Foreman; Former AmCham Chairman Thomas H. McGowan; AmCham Board members Joyce Lee, Tim Shields, and Daniel Tseng; AmCham Senior Director Don Shapiro; and AmCham Senior Director of Government and Public Affairs Amy Chang.

The breakfast discussion centered around the recent progress in AmCham’s White Paper issues, as well as opportunities for expanding educational and cultural exchanges between Taiwan and the United States.

Understanding the Impact of U.S. Tax Reform

The recently enacted 2017 Tax Cut and Reform Bill, approved December 22, 2017, has substantially impacted taxpayers and domestic companies in the United States as well as operational planning for multinational corporations. While the new law reduces corporate and individual tax rates, the policy comes with a wide range of complexities in financial reporting.

To ensure companies are prepared to account for changes in the tax code related to the bill, AmCham Taipei’s Tax Committee invited Peter Su, US Tax / Tax & Legal Services Partner / Managing Director of PwC Taiwan, to a Chinese-language luncheon program entitled, “美國稅改之影響初步評估” (Assessment of Initial Impact in US Tax Reform)  held at the Grand Hyatt Taipei. Su discussed the initial impact of the US tax reform, impact of US tax reform on Taiwan businessmen, and individuals in the US.

From left to right: Peter Su, CA CPA/TX Bar (USA), US Tax / Tax & Legal Services, Partner / Managing Director, PwC Taiwan; AmCham Tax Committee Co-Chair Stella Lai, Public Affairs / Government Affairs Consultant, Dell (Taiwan) B.V. Taiwan Branch; AmCham President William Foreman

*This event was conducted in Mandarin. 本次活動將以中文進行。

When: June 8, 2018 (12 PM – 2 PM)

Where: Grand Hyatt Taipei, 2F, The Residence

Speaker: Mr. Peter Su, CA CPA/TX Bar (USA), US Tax / Tax & Legal Services, Partner / Managing Director, PwC Taiwan
蘇宥人執行董事

美國總統Donald J. Trump (以下簡稱川普)於 2017年12月22日簽署減稅1.5兆美元的稅改法案,新法除調降所得稅率、修正所得來源認定判斷條件及取消企業之最低稅負制等, 另新增多項反避稅以及防止稅基侵蝕條款。此次稅改是美國三十年來規模最大的減稅調整,不僅影響美國國內企業,亦影響集團跨國企業之營運規劃,包含歐盟及中國等世界主要經濟體皆積極評估其對各國經濟環境之衝擊與影響。不論台商是否已在美國投資皆須留意,審慎檢視美國稅改之因應策略,以便即時調整美國及全球營運佈局。

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Note: AmCham events are intended primarily for AmCham members and their guests. Many events are open to members’ guests and other non-members, but the attendance of any non-member must be approved in advance. AmCham reserves the right not to admit a non-member to any event without explanation.