Announcement of 2015 ECCT membership fee increases
At the ECCT's Annual General Meeting held on 5 December 2014, Regular ECCT members unanimously approved a proposal made by the ECCT's 2014 Board of Directors to raise ECCT membership fees for 2015.
Background context and rationale
After more than two years of careful deliberations, the ECCT's Board of Directors has decided that an increase in membership fees is necessary to ensure the future sustainability of the chamber. ECCT membership fees have not been raised for at least 15 years, despite a significant rise in inflation and a 300% increase in staff. The chamber has managed to avoid increasing fees to date thanks to a steady rise in membership that had offset the rise in expenses. However, the situation has changed in the past three years. The following are the main reasons that necessitate an increase in fees:
- Most large and medium-sized European companies doing business in Taiwan are already members of the ECCT. While the chamber's overall membership is still rising modestly every year, the increases are no longer sufficient to cover the chamber's increasing costs.
- Up until 2011, the chamber had always managed to post annual surpluses. However, in 2012, the chamber posted an annual deficit. Another deficit was posted in 2013 and a slightly larger deficit is forecast for 2014. While the deficits to date have been small and can be absorbed by the chamber's reserves, the current trajectory is not sustainable in the long term.
- As a result of recent annual deficits, the chamber's reserves are currently sufficient to cover only five months of operating expenses. This is lower than the benchmark set by other non-profit organisations and other foreign business chambers, which have reserves of 6-8 months or more.
- In recent years, the chamber has improved its services to members by increasing the number and quality of events, the quality and frequency of contacts with the government and expanded its activities to other cities across Taiwan as part of the transition to a nationwide association. These activities have resulted in an increase in staff and other operating expenses. An increase in fees is necessary for the chamber to maintain and improve its services in the future.
Therefore the Board of Directors proposes to increase membership fees by approximately 12% (the actual amounts depend on the membership category and are rounded off to the nearest NT$500). For a list of membership fees please refer to the Fee Chart.
The board believes that this increase is modest given 15 years of inflation.