Greater China Committee Luncheon: Discussion on Cross-Strait Dilemmas

Prominent China scholars Harry Harding and Syaru Shirley Lin, both professors at the University of Virginia, jointly gave a presentation on “Cross-Strait Dilemmas: Challenges Facing Donald Trump, Xi Jinping, and Tsai Ing-wen” at a luncheon meeting of AmCham Taipei’s Greater China Committee on May 5.

  • Despite Taiwan’s huge trade and investment links with China, interest in Taiwan in unification with the mainland has declined sharply over the decades, especially among the younger generation.
  • The reason is development in Taiwan of a distinct Taiwanese identify, defined mainly by perceptions of a different “way of life” centered on civic values.
  • The change poses serious policy challenges for the leadership in all three places, but especially for Taiwan. Should it deepen its economic integration with China or give priority to improving relations with the rest of the world?
  • Beijing’s approach toward Taiwan hasn’t been working. Looking ahead, it has three options (none ideal from its point of view): 1) stay the course, hoping that deeper economic integration and more frequent political dialogue will gradually restore a Chinese identity and interest in unification, 2) increase pressure on Taiwan using diplomatic and economic sanctions or even military action, and 3) narrow the gap, undertaking reforms reducing the differences between the two political systems.
  • Washington has to consider whether its “One China” policy is obsolete or is it an irreplaceable component of American’s China policy? Its options include: 1) upgrading relations with Taiwan within a One-China framework, 2) making a deal with China, and 3) no change.
  • Taiwanese tend to blame their problems on China, but many of the difficulties are reflections of globalization and the “High Income Trap” Taiwan shares with other more-developed economies. The political consequences of these trends are being seen worldwide.

From left to right: Dan Silver, Standing Vice Chairman, speaker Harry Harding, Professor of Public Policy at University of Virginia, speaker Syaru Shirley Lin, Professor of Political Science at University of Virginia, Helen Chou, Greater China Business Committee Chair.


AmCham Joint Luncheon: CSR and Business Growth with Low Carbon Strategy by Green Bond

There are just only fifteen years left for keeping global average temperatures “well below” 2°C above preindustrial levels. Paris Agreement of UNFCCC, which is effective last November, will drive the transformation of doing business in a low carbon mode. The financial sector and capital market play vital roles for supporting the low carbon economy.

On April 20, AmCham CSR Committee & Sustainable Development Committee held “CSR and Business Growth with Low Carbon Strategy Supported by Green Bond” at the Grand Hyatt Taipei. The speaker Niven Huang, General Manager, KPMG Sustainability Consulting Co., Ltd., introduced the fact & trend of emerging green bond and other vital worldwide signals of low carbon transformation.

As the growth of corporate green bonds is expected to continue and play an important role in the economy, Dr. Niven Huang addressed the pathway of embedding climate change issue into CSR actions and business strategy. While several green bonds were issued by well-known companies in the last several years, there is a lack of consensus in green bond standards. Strengthening green bond standards will be necessary to help build trust and confidence, as well attract more investors for environmental projects.

From left to right: Nadia Chen, Country Executive, Bank of New York Mellon Taipei Branch, speaker Niven Huang, General Manager, KPMG Sustainability Consulting Co., Ltd., Cosmas Lu, Strategy Adviser, Super Dragon Technology Co., LTD.

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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.

HR Committee Seminar: Discussion on Labor Standards Act Amendment

AmCham HR Committee held a seminar on April 19, at the Westin Taipei to enhance understanding of the amended law that was enacted by the Legislative Yuan in December 2016. Liau Huei-Fang, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Labor, was invited to the event to discuss details and answer questions.

勞動基準法修法說明會 – Discussion on Labor Standards Act Amendment – this event was conducted in Mandarin.


Speaker Liau Huei-Fang, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Labor with HR committee co-chairs and attendees

When: April 19, 2017 (9 AM – 12 PM)

Where: The Westin Taipei, B3 Yong Chun  / 六福皇宮 B3 永春殿

Speaker: Liau Huei-Fang, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Labor / 勞動部政務次長  廖蕙芳

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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.

Travel & Tourism Luncheon: 2017 Taipei Summer Universiade

Taiwan will be hosting the 29th Summer Universiade competition between August 19th-30th in Taipei City. The Universiade is an international multi-sport event, organized for university athletes by the International University Sports Federation (FISU).

The largest sporting event ever held in Taiwan, the 2017 Summer Universiade will bring over 12,000 participants — both athletes and delegates — from over 150 countries to Taiwan for 12 days of competition and education, sportsmanship and friendship. As the event presents unprecedented opportunities to revamp and transform Taipei City, Travel & Tourism Committee invited You Shih-ming, Deputy CEO of 2017 Taipei Summer Universiade in this luncheon session, to speak to our members and guests about the initiatives the city is involved in to prepare for the event.

29th Summer Universiade staff members with You Shih-ming , Deputy CEO of 2017 Taipei summer Universiade, Andrea Wu AmCham Taipei President, Travel and Tourism Co-Chairs: Anita Chen and Achim V. Hake

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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.

Marketing & Distribution Committee Luncheon: The Changing Media Landscape

On March 16th, the AmCham Marketing & Distribution Committee held a luncheon at the Shangri-La’s Far Eastern Plaza Hotel and invited Irene Chen, Vice President, Media Research, Nielsen Taiwan & Hong Kong to speak about “Consumer Connections in a Changing Media Landscape.”

Over the last decade, one of the greatest impact on consumer landscape is the Internet. The Internet has changed the way consumers embrace new technology, receive information, and messages from TV, print, and digital media – catching consumers’ attention is becoming more and more difficult.

Consumer Connections in a Changing Media Landscape, at the Shangri-La’s Far Eastern Plaza Hotel.

In this sharing session, Irene Chen, answered the 5 key questions advertisers should think about:

  • What are consumers’ media behaviors?
  • How have they changed?
  • What are the latest trends?
  • How do I connect to different groups of consumers?
  • How do I evaluate digital ad investment with the right KPI to achieve the best ROI?

AmCham Tax Committee Luncheon – 跨境電商營業稅課稅新制簡介

AmCham Tax Committee held a luncheon on March 10th at Regent Taipei to inform and educate attendees about business and cross-border tax laws.

跨境電商營業稅課稅新制簡介 – this event was conducted in Mandarin.


When: Mar 10, 2017 (12 PM – 2 PM)

Where: Regent Taipei, 4F VIP Room 1 / 台北晶華酒店 貴賓廳一 4F

Speaker: 翁培祐 – 財政部賦稅署消費稅組組長

(left) Tax Committee Co-Chair, Josephine Peng Senior Counselor, Lee and Li, Attorneys-at-Law, (second-left): 蘇靜娟 – 稽核 財政部賦稅署消費稅組, (second-right) 翁培祐-財政部賦稅署消費稅組組長, (right) Tax Committee Co-Chair, Cheli Liaw Partner, Deloitte & Touche


IP&L Luncheon: The Value of Trade Secrets

Many companies would benefit by treating their confidential information more often as trade secrets rather than only or primarily seeking patent protection. That was the main theme of the presentation “The Orphaned Asset: Trade Secrets as a Much Neglected Corporate Source,” held March 3 at the Grand Hyatt Taipei under the sponsorship of AmCham Taipei’s Intellectual Property & Licensing Committee. The speaker was a leading authority on trade secrets: Dr. Richard L. Thurston, head of the Taipei office of the law firm Duane Morris LLP and former senior vice president and general counsel of TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.).


IP&L committee co-chair, Jeffrey Harris, Managing Director, Orient Commercial Enquiries (left), speaker Richard L. Thurston, Ph.D. (middle), and IP&L committee co-chair, Peter J. Dernbach Partner, Winkler Partners (right)

The advantages of a well-managed trade-secret program within a company’s IP portfolio include:

  • Saving the considerable expense involved in patent filing and maintenance.
  • Enjoying coverage in perpetuity, whereas patents are for a limited period.
  • Gaining flexibility, as the content of trade secrets can be continuously updated or new trade secrets added.

The strengthening of Taiwan’s Trade Secrets Law in recent years has made this option a realistic choice. But companies must do their part by signing non-compete and non-disclosure agreements with key employees and implementing effective internal controls to ensure that trade secrets are well protected.

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Joint Luncheon: Workplace Design – Health & Wellness Strategies for the Office

Modern workplace design is all about designing for people.

More employers are recognizing that taking care of their employees’ wants and needs means a healthier, happier workplace and, in turn, increased productivity, higher retention and an improved bottom line.

The aim of wellness-based workplace design is to create an office evironment where employees are enabled to work more productively and collaborate with ease. Experts say it’s time to move in these design directions to keep workers engaged, productive, and to get the most out of your office space.

On November 11, the AmCham Human Resources, Sustainable Development, and Infrastructure Committees jointly hosted a workshop on the topic of Workplace Design.

Special Guest speakers Tony Armstrong and Victoria Gilbert from International WELL Building Institute introduced members and guests to the core concepts of wellness-based workplace design, bringing them up to speed on the latest trends, standards, and strategies that can be utilized to achive optimal results.

Special Thanks to SL+A for covering expenses in bringing the speakers to Taiwan.

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Tax Luncheon: U.S. Income Tax Compliance & Reporting

U.S. citizens and green card holders must report their worldwide income and file a variety of reporting forms with the IRS to disclose their interests in foreign bank accounts, trusts and corporations. Failure to file such reporting forms can subject U.S. taxpayers to significant civil and potentially criminal liability.

On October 27, the AmCham Taipei Tax Committee invited Christopher Karachale, Attorney and Partner, Hanson Bridgett LLP and Raymond Leung, Certified public accountant and a partner, Leung, Louie, lp & Co. LLP to give AmCham members and guests a detailed explanation of the responsibilities faced by U.S. taxpayes living abroad.


Various programs exist allowing U.S. taxpayers the opportunity to come into compliance with their reporting responsibilities. The presentation will describe these programs and the various requirements for individuals to come into compliance with their U.S. tax reporting responsibilities.

Expatriate U.S. taxpayers and non-U.S. individuals are increasingly interested in investing in U.S. businesses and real estate. In addition to tax reporting responsibilities, the presentation will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the different entity structures foreign investors may consider for their U.S. investments.

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Tax Luncheon: Tax Challenges & Opportunities for Multinationals

On October 26, AmCham’s Tax Committee hosted a luncheon at the Regent Taipei, where Eunice Kuo, Partner of Deloitte China, gave a presentation on the Tax challenges and opportunities faced by multinational corporations in their supply chain management.

Synopsis of Kuo’s Presentation: 

Multinational companies have been constantly looking for optimal business transactional structures to streamline their operations and to optimize their tax efficiency. It has been common to see MNCs’ use of regional principal trading company, group intangibles owner and group financing and treasury center. Under the post-BEPS (base erosion and profit shifting) environment, would these commonly seen structures still be safe for tax purposes after the OECD introduced BEPS action plans and Asia Pacific tax authorities have been modifying local rules to respond to BEPS actions?

Kuo shared with with AmCham members and guests what MNCs should do to mitigate their tax risks while looking after tax efficient business transactions. Topics of discussion included

• Commonly seen business models in this Region
• BEPS actions which may impact on existing business models
• Discussion about value chain analysis
• Next steps for MNCs

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