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Taiwan RFID Technology, Applications Showcased at International Exhibit

The TAITRA exhibit draws 60,000 potential buyers of RFID technology and includes 50 vendors sharing RFID technology developments.
By Claire Swedberg
Oct 08, 2008The second annual Taiwan International RFID Applications Show, with a theme of "smart living"—that is, enhancing peoples' living standards—launched this Tuesday at the Nangang Exhibition Hall in Taipei, Taiwan. The exhibit, slated to run until Oct. 11, is part of the Taipei International Electronics Show (TAITRONICS), which includes Taiwanese manufacturers of broadband and consumer electronic components and devices. TAITRONICS is hosted by the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) and the Taiwan Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers' Association (TEEMA), and is sponsored by the country's Ministry of Economic Affairs' Bureau of Foreign Trade.

In the exhibit's opening ceremony, held Tuesday morning, an audience of approximately 400 gathered to hear from Ma Ying-jeou, president of the Republic of China, as well as other Taiwanese government officials. John Chen-chung Deng, deputy minister of Taiwan's Ministry of Economic Affairs, described a "lair-like" clustering effect of RFID and electronics technology underway in that nation. "We are currently one of the [largest] electronic information and communication technology forts in the world," he said, with other Asian markets geographically surrounding the island of Taiwan.

Speaking at the 2008 TAITRONICS show, President Ma Ying-jeou holds up an RFID-enabled ID card.
In 2007 Taiwan's RFID industry was valued at NT$2 billion (US$68 million) in sales of RFID hardware, software and services, a 62 percent increase from the year prior. According to TAITRA, that number is expected to reach NT$12 billion (US$400 million) in 2010. Sales of tags account for 38 percent of that share, and are expected to grow to 45 percent in 2010.

At present, Deng told the exhibit's standing-room only audience in a room at the newly constructed Taipei exhibition center, the Executive Yuan (Taiwan's executive branch) is investing more than NT$3 billion (US$100 million) toward developing the RFID industry in that country. "By next year," Deng predicted, "our people will be able to sense the technological service brought about by the RFID technology in all aspects of life, such as health care, finance, trading, logistics and agriculture." In 2009, Deng said he expects manufacturers will produce NT$10 billion (US$308 million) worth of RFID hardware.

Products at the show are focused on environmental friendliness, said TEEMA's chairman, Yu-cheng Chiao, with green and energy-saving devices being showcased by manufacturers using RFID as well as broadband technologies. One example of a "green technology," Chiao noted, includes battery-free remote controls for televisions being developed by Favite, a company based in Taiwan's Hsinchu County.

President Ma deemed the combination of the RFID, broadband and photovoltaics exhibits into a single TAITRA program an indication of the diversity of innovation that would steer Taiwan through the current global economic downturn. "This integration... provides a good example for creating conditions for better environmental protections through cutting energy costs and pooling technological expertise," he stated. "Even in the face of a sluggish global economy, we can still create growth through the use of new approaches and combinations."

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