On January 30, 2024, the American Chamber of Commerce in Taiwan (AmCham Taiwan, a Coalition member) released its 2024 Business Climate Survey, reporting on U.S. member company confidence in Taiwan’s economy for 2024 and beyond. The report found that there is strong support for a US-Taiwan bilateral trade agreement (BTA).
The survey covered U.S. business support of the US-Taiwan trade relationship.
A majority of AmCham members considered it important to their business for Taiwan to achieve a bilateral trade agreement with the United States. Support is widespread for the signing of a second agreement and swift implementation of the U.S.-Taiwan Initiative on 21st-Century Trade, and members view the chapter on Good Regulatory Practices as the most important section for their business.
Although national security and cross-Strait relations were considered important concerns, a majority of survey takers said they had not been significantly disrupted by increased tension across the Taiwan Strait during 2023. Nevertheless, 35% of companies said they are revising business continuity plans to address the geopolitical climate.
These findings led AmCham Taiwan to make a statement directed to Taiwan and U.S. lawmakers to improve bilateral trade relations and support the 21st Century Trade Initiative as a steppingstone for a BTA.
AmCham therefore calls on the Taiwan authorities to make exceptional efforts to reduce bureaucracy and fine-tune regulations. The Chamber also calls on both Taiwan and the United States to make faster, deeper progress on the current 21st Century Trade Initiative as the precursor to a long-needed bilateral free trade agreement.
In the report, respondents were asked about their Taiwan investments and revenue in 2023 and projections.
While 75% of respondents reported strong corporate performance in 2022, reports for 2023 saw 71% of companies reporting stable or increased revenue. The four-percentage gap was taken up by the companies reporting revenue that “decreased significantly.” Reports of revenue somewhat decreasing remained consistent at 19%Screenshot from the AmCham Taiwan 2024 Business Climate Survey. Page S-4
In last year’s survey 88% of respondents anticipated their investment in Taiwan to stay the same or increase during 2023. However, at the end of the year 94% of companies said they had maintained or expanded their level of investment in Taiwan during 2023. The most notable rise was seen in reports of a “significant increase,” predominantly from the professional services and retail and trade industries, which together accounted for around 40% of these reports. An impressive 92% of companies said they plan to maintain or increase their investment in Tai wan in 2024, an increase of four percentage points from last year.Screenshot from the AmCham Taiwan 2024 Business Climate Survey. Page S-5
Respondents valued a Bilateral Trade Agreement (BTA) as their highest priority among all US-Taiwan trade agreements.
The most valued agreement would be a bilateral trade agreement (BTA) with the United States. A majority of respondents (72%) said they consider it important to their business for Taiwan and the United States to achieve a BTA, a long-standing advocacy objective of the Chamber. Over half of respondents (64%) saidScreenshot from the AmCham Taiwan 2024 Business Climate Survey. Page S-14.
they consider the U.S.-Taiwan Initiative on 21st-Century Trade to be important to their business.
The US-Taiwan Bilateral Trade Agreement Coalition welcomes the findings of this survey.