Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Government still selling ECFA as Ag boon

Future exports under ECFA?

The government is still pushing the ECFA = Agricultural Export Increases! line, still trying to sell ECFA as a big boost to Taiwanese agriculture (a 2011 review of that drive) and change some minds in southern Taiwan. Though, I also wonder if they are trying to lay the groundwork for opening up to agricultural exports from China, which would likely be devastating: "See how competitive we are? It's safe to flood the island with melamine melons and stuff from China!"

The latest round in this effort was out on the intertubes via Taiwan Today.... noting that 2012 ag exports rose to US $5.08 billion (8.8% YOY rise), the piece attributed that to ECFA. But wait... what's our top market? Well, it says Japan, but actually Taiwan splits Hong Kong from China... meaning that 25% of our exports go to China.
“Agricultural products posted the highest growth at 14 percent, while Japan was the country’s top export market at 21.1 percent followed by mainland China, 15.5 percent, Hong Kong, 10.1 percent, and the U.S., 9.3 percent,” a Council of Agriculture official said March 18 in a statement.

Fresh fruit exports reached US$62.02 million, down 0.6 percent year on year but up 51.7 percent from 2007. The official attributed the drop to reduced output and price increases following typhoons.

“But cross-strait direct flights saw fresh fruit shipments to mainland China jump 42 percent to US$15.39 million. Of these, items on the ECFA early harvest list such as bananas, hami melons, lemons, oranges and red dragon fruits accounted for US$1.38 million, surging 71.4 percent compared to 2007.”
Think about the numbers the COA gives there. Total exports: $5.08 billion. Fresh fruit shipments to China jumped to.... $15.39 million. Like 0.3% of total exports? It's less than a rounding error. But here the COA is, still pushing the ECFA = Big Ag Boost! claim using increases in fruit sales....
Don't miss the comments below! And check out my blog and its sidebars for events, links to previous posts and picture posts, and scores of links to other Taiwan blogs and forums! Delenda est, baby.


Richard said...

Look, I know what Delenda Est means and refers to (Carthage vs. Rome). But what the heck does it have to do with Taiwan?

Anonymous said...

What are the 'intertubes' you are talking about?
If you mean grapevine, I never used it this way.

Michael Turton said...

The internet