Global Fastener News

Taiwan Invites World to See How Its Cluster Manufacturing Concept Works

Taiwan Invites World to See How Its Cluster Manufacturing Concept Works
June 29
00:00 2010


Editor’s Note: The Taiwan External Trade Development Council invited leading fastener journalists from around the world to Taiwan to promote the new trade show in October 2010.

It will be a different kind of trade show. The first Taiwan International Fastener Show will have just 300 traditional booths, but the October 19-20, 2010, event won’t be just distributors wandering aisles and stopping at booths in the convention hall.

The emphasis is on visiting the source. Exhibitors are inviting distributors from around the world for plant tours and visits to related service providers before or after the show.

Instead of Taiwan companies traveling to Japan, Europe, Russia and the U.S., to exhibit at trade shows, they are inviting customers to visit Taiwan.

The development of the fastener industry in Taiwan is traced back to the end of World War II when internal and external demand increased.

Chun Yu Works & Co. Ltd. was an early leader. Founded in 1949 to manufacture sewing needles and calculators, Chun Yu converted to iron punching nuts and in 1955 began manufacturing screws, nuts and hex socket cap screws.

Chun Yu chairman Bruce Sun said the materials for the early screw production came from steel plate of ships and artillery shells.

The U.S. military turned to Taiwan as a fastener supply base for the Vietnam War.

From 1968 to 1978 high efficiency of production machinery and technology brought production cost down.

After Taiwan’s China Steel Corporation began producing wire rod, many fastener manufacturers moved south to reduce both steel shipping costs and using Kaohsiung harbor for exports.

Major construction projects in Taiwan between 1979 and 1983 increased fastener demand, prompting a jump in the number of factories from 30 to more than 100.

From 1984 to 1990 is considered to be Taiwan’s growth period in fasteners due to innovation, automated production machines, quality control, communization, competitive pricing, quality and fast delivery. Taiwan’s fastener exports reached 140 nations and totaled 30% of the world’s fasteners.

Cluster Manufacturing Concept

Taiwan’s fastener and other industries grew in the “industrial cluster concept.”

Clusters are traced back to urban development and a group of economic entities locate in one area to best utilize related supply and services. Examples of such early clusters were the cotton textiles in Lancashire, England in the 19th century or tiles and shoes in northeastern Italy in the 20th or the cluster of semiconductor computer and telecommunication industries in California’s Silicon Valley.

• Taiwan’s Southern industrial cluster – including Kaohsiung and Tainan – produces 40% of the nation’s fasteners.

• The central Taiwan cluster – around Taichung and Changhua – produces another 25% of the country’s fasteners.

• The Northern cluster, which includes Taoyuan, Shulin and Sanchong, manufactures 35%.

Between 1991 and 2001, currency exchange rates, wages and land costs sent some fastener companies to China and Southeast Asian countries.

Taiwan now faced price competition and moved into higher quality and value-added production, including stainless structural and automotive fasteners. More Taiwan manufacturers sought ISO, QS and TS certification.

Today, with 1,290 fastener manufacturers, Taiwan is one of the top five fastener exporting countries and accounts for 6% by production value and 30% by volume.

Taiwan exports fasteners to more than 150 countries with the U.S. the leading customer. In 2008 42% of fasteners were exported to the U.S.

Distributor Incentive Program

The Taiwan show is sponsored by the Bureau of Foreign Trade and organized by the Taiwan External Trade Development Council and the Taiwan Industrial Fasteners Institute.

TAITRA is offering incentives for distributors to attend and see how the Taiwan industrial concept has developed. The show is located in southwestern Taiwan so distributors also can visit factories in the Kaohsiung area.

For information on incentive programs contact TAITRA. Tel: (886) 2-2725 5200 x2627 Fax (886) 2-2723 4374 E-mail: Web: ©2010

Related Stories:

• 1988 FIN – Taiwan Encouraging Investment in the U.S.

• 1997 FIN – Automation Expands Taiwan Production

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