Belgium, (Brussels Morning Newspaper) Taiwan and the EU are to discuss trade and chip production at a high level, according to a source with knowledge of the matter.
Ranking officials are to hold a virtual meeting later today as the EU pushes to increase in chip production and strengthen its semiconductor industry, Reuters reports on Thursday.
The EU presented its European Chips Act in February this year, mentioning Taiwan as the home of the largest semiconductor manufacturer, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), and a “like-minded partner” that which the bloc would like to tighten its cooperation with.
The source pointed out that Wang Mei-hua, Taiwanese Minister of Economic Affairs, will hold a virtual meeting with a ranking EU trade official later today.
While the source did not reveal more, the EU official in question is likely Valdis Dombrovskis, European Commissioner for Trade.
Speaking at a press conference in Taipei on Wednesday evening, Wang noted that relations between Taiwan and the EU are deepening and added that talks are underway at all levels.
She did not provide more details, but stressed she would announce any significant developments in timely manner. The Taiwanese Government noted earlier that room for strengthening cooperation on semiconductors with the EU was “enormous.”
Similar talks with US
The high-level EU meeting is to take place one day after the EU agreed to start new trade negotiations with Taiwan.
According to the EU chips plan, the European Commission is to relax funding rules for manufacture of semiconductors.
The bloc put the plan in motion in response to the global chip shortage caused by supply chain disruptions and bottlenecks, which caused severe problems for many sectors in the last year or so.
The TSMC is investing some US$ 21 billion in semiconductor factories in the US and has previously noted that it was in early stages of planning a potential manufacturing plant in Europe.
While the EU does not have formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan, it has been supportive of the country, especially since relations between the bloc and China worsened over human rights and trade disputes.
Besides semiconductor talks, Taiwan has been calling on the EU to sign a bilateral investment agreement.