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Taiwan May Play Key Role in Digital TV Industry
Jan 2, 2004
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With Taiwan's booming development in various related fields, the country stands a good chance of playing a leadership role in the global digital TV industry, according to industry sources.

Taiwan is eminently placed to play a key global role, as its competitive home appliance, information, and liquid crystal display (LCD) sectors can easily make the switch to the digital TV industry, which is widely seen as the most prevailing product in the world market in the next wave of the information industry evolution, the sources said.

At a time when many countries are heavily promoting digital TV, potential profits are enormous, they added.

More than 40 percent of the families in Britain have owned a digital TV -- the highest ratio in Europe -- followed by France and Spain. The U.S. is projecting to phase in digital TV in 2006 nationwide, while mainland China also plans to fully enter the digital era in 2008, when the Olympic Games held in Beijing will be broadcast through digital systems to the whole world.

At the same time, Taiwan authorities have also included the related IC design, LCD, and plasma TV sectors to advocate the digital content industry, which is a key area in "Challenge 2008," the 6-year national development plan unveiled by the Cabinet in early 2003.

The government has set a target of achieving an 85-percent penetration rate among Taiwan families by 2006.

According to statistics released by the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the number of families around the world owning a digital TV will total around 260 million units in 2005, compared to the current global TV market of 130 million units. In Taiwan alone, the digital content industry is expected to create a market worth NT$370 billion (approx. U.S. $10.9 billion) in 2006, statistics show.

According to an executive of a company affiliated to the BenQ group, consolidation of Taiwan's related businesses in the IC design, digital content, LCD, and Internet sectors will build a strong momentum to help Taiwan gain a leadership role in the international digital TV market.

Hung Min-chang, chairman of a local TV brand, Proton, said Taiwan possesses great potential to develop its digital TV industry and predicted that its market scale will be three-fold that of the present domestic information industry market.

As a result of promotion by the government, industry, and academic sectors, Taiwan has caught up with the pace of developed countries in the field, Mr. Hung noted. He called for the setting up of business alliances among related sources to lay a solid foundation for a new "Taiwan miracle." (CAN, Asia Pulse)

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