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ECCT celebrates 25th anniversary and goes nation-wide

Taipei, 26 February – The European Chamber of Commerce Taiwan (ECCT) celebrated its 25th anniversary and inauguration as a nation-wide association today, marking the transition of the ECCT as a Taipei-based association registered with the Taipei City Government to a nation-wide association registered with the Ministry of Interior. The chamber has thereby become the first and only foreign nation-wide business chamber in Taiwan. The chamber's new status is aimed at expanding the chamber's reach and activities to the whole of Taiwan. This will allow the ECCT to hold official dialogue with local municipal governments all around Taiwan on behalf of its members and host activities across Taiwan. The event was attended by around 300 ECCT members and prominent guests. They included President Ma Ying-jeou, Minister of the Interior Lee Hong-yuan, Secretary General to the President, Timothy Yang, former Vice President Vincent Siew, former Straits Exchange Foundation Chairman PK Chiang, senior cabinet officials, city mayors from Taipei, Taoyuan and Tainan as well as eleven former ECCT Chairmen and CEOs. The programme included speeches by President Ma, ECCT Chairman Giuseppe Izzo and the ECCT's first and founding chairman in 1988, John Brinsden.

In his speech at the event ECCT Chairman Giuseppe Izzo lauded the important contributions of all stakeholders to the chamber's success over the past 25 years. The chairman expressed gratitude to President Ma and his colleagues in the national government for 25 years of close cooperation and partnership and Taipei City Mayor Hau Lung-bin and the Taipei City Government for their support. He also singled out ECCT members, in particular, chairmen, CEOs and committee chairpersons for their hard work and dedication to the chamber. An awards ceremony was held during proceedings where Mayor Hau and Chairman Izzo handed out commemorative plaques to former Chairmen and CEOs.

Chairman Izzo went on to express optimism about the ECCT's future as a nation-wide association given its diversified membership, substantial investments of over US$31 billion dollars and excellent relations with the Taiwan government. "Our member companies are world leaders in many industry sectors. We have brought Europe's best technology, skills, standards and business practices to Taiwan. We have built a solid foundation for future prosperity and we are committed to Taiwan. We believe Taiwan is a good place to live and a great place to do business. As a nation-wide chamber, we will work together with our partners in business and government to make an even greater contribution to Taiwan's economic development. Together, we can build an even more dynamic, sustainable and successful economy for the people of Taiwan," he said.

In his remarks Chairman Izzo thanked Minister Lee Hong-yuan and his colleagues at the Ministry of Interior for their assistance in ensuring a smooth administrative process in the Chamber's transition to a nation-wide association. He also welcomed the attendance of Taoyuan County Mayor Wu Chi-yang and Tainan City Mayor William Lai (Ching-te), who he described as "new friends and partners of the chamber", saying that he looked forward to much closer cooperation with them in the future as the European Chamber of Commerce Taiwan.

About the ECCT
With over US$31 billion in direct foreign investments, European business remains the largest group of foreign investors in Taiwan. The European Chamber of Commerce Taiwan is the only nation-wide foreign business chamber in Taiwan and the principle organisation promoting European business interests in Taiwan. The chamber represents around 700 members from 400 companies and organisations. Through a network of 28 industry and support committees, the ECCT has been successful in addressing specific concerns and providing concrete recommendations to all levels of government to facilitate improving the business environment. The ECCT annually publishes a series of position papers that comprise issues identified by its committees as hindering the further development of their respective industries and provide recommendations to the government of Taiwan for improvement of the business environment on general issues as well as industry-specific problems. They also serve to keep the European Commission, the European Parliament as well as the governments of individual European Union member states informed about Taiwan's business environment.