The Taichung City Government has been promoting major construction projects including MRT, Shuinan Economic and Trade Park and the Airport Gate by actively inviting international investment to stimulate economic growth in Taichung. Today (the 17th), the Deputy Director of the British Office Taipei, Andrew Pittam, went with Bechtel's Regional President for Asia Pacific, Richard Freer, in visiting the Taichung City Government. Received by Deputy Mayor, Bruce Ling Hu, both sides exchanged opinions towards issues including large-scale urban construction projects, MRT planning and key economic development projects. In the future, more opportunities will be invited for urban planning and investment.
According to Deputy Mayor Ling Hu, the Taichung City Government has been working closely with the British Office Taipei. Director of the Office, Catherine Elizabeth Nettleton, attended the 2018 Taichung World Flora Export and last year, she helped to arrange the visit of the delegation led by Mayor Lu Shiow-Yen to the UK to study emission reduction and clear air-related policies. Deputy Mayor Ling Hu mentioned that he was also trained in the UK for one year when first serving as a diplomat official and was impressed by the British history and culture. He hopes that in the future, more exchanges and cooperation with the UK can be promoted.
Deputy Director at the British Office Taipei, Andrew Pittam said he visited Taichung many times after serving Taiwan for more than three years. In recent years, many British businessmen came to invest in Taiwan and by taking this opportunity, he accompanied Bechtel's Regional President for Asia Pacific, Richard Freer, to come to understand the recent important urban construction projects in Taichung. In the future, his office will continuously assist British businesses to look for more investment opportunities in Taichung.
Bechtel's Regional President for Asia Pacific, Richard Freer, said that his Group shut down its headquarters in Shanghai in 2014 and set up the new one in Taiwan afterwards. He hoped that the headquarters in Taiwan can become the operating hub for the Asia Pacific region. He has participated in various energy, transport and industrial development construction projects in over 160 countries; additionally, the Taiwanese subsidiary, Pacific Engineers and Constructors Ltd., was entrusted with the important public construction projects such as Nuclear Power Plant 2, Taipei Train Station and Taipei MRT. He recognized that the construction development achieved in recently years by the Taichung City Government and hopes that in the future, he would be able to take a part in important track construction of Taichung MRT network.
According to the Taichung City Government, the UK is an important trading partner of Taiwan and last year trade between two sides accumulated to the total amount of US$4.3 billion, making the UK the second exporting and investing destination of Taiwan in Europe. The accumulated amount placed by the UK in Taiwan came to US$10 billion, following the Netherlands as the top two European countries investing in Taiwan. Through experience sharing this time, both sides hope that in the future, more British businesses will come to invest in Taichung.
The five members of the delegation today include Deputy Director, Andrew Pittam, Director of Engineering Section of the Office, Ying De-Hui, and Bechtel's Regional President for Asia Pacific, Richard Freer. In addition to Deputy Mayor Ling Hu, the delegation was also received by the Secretary General of the IDIPC, Taichung, Kao Yi-Hsiang, Chief Engineer of the Urban Development Bureau, Tsai Ching-Hung, Special Commissioner of the Economic Development Bureau, Huang Yu-Shan and Special Commissioner of the Transportation Bureau, Hsu Chao-Tsing. The exchanges were very fruitful.