Taiwan to develop $900 mn biotech park
The government in Taiwan is keen to establish biotech parks with unique features. "Our vision is to create a National Biotechnology Park with a total investment up to $900 million in the building of the park. The Ministry of National Defense will make 25 hectares of its property at the Military 202 Armament Factory in Nankang available for the establishment of a biotech science park," said Mr Chen Shui-bian, President of Taiwan.
Delivering the key note address at the two-day "BioBusiness Asia 2007" summit at Taipei, the President said, "The National Science Council will invest $400 million to plan the layout for the park's biomedical compound, and will be in charge of the construction of the park's basic infrastructure and education center. At the same time, the Academia Sinica, on its part, will invest around $500 million to build the park's research and development center and clinical laboratories, and introduce research on new pharmaceuticals and special biotech disciplines, such as translational medicine and genomic medicine."
Urging the international community to support Taiwan's efforts to participate in the World Health Organization (WHO), the President further pointed out that besides the National Biotechnology Park, "We are planning to build two more communities of leading biotech enterprises. One of these will be located in the Hsinchu Biomedical Science Park, and will aim to attract major biotech companies, vaccine manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, electronic and telecommunications-based medical equipment manufacturers, and animal laboratories to open operations there. The other community will be located in the Kaohsiung Science Park, which is part of the Southern Taiwan Science Park. It will focus on attracting manufacturers of dental and orthopedic equipment, scalpels, and microelectromechanical systems. We believe that only with these three communities of biotech enterprises in place can we lay a solid foundation for the development of Taiwan's biotech sector, so that Taiwan can become a visible player in the global biotech industry."
He also observed, that the government and private sector's efforts in promoting the biotech sector have led investment in the biopharmaceutical industry to increase from less than $300 million-a-year to nearly $700 million-per-year over the past five years. By the end of last year, the number of biotech and biomedical companies in Taiwan exceeded 1,100. These companies had a total business turnover of $6 billion last year and enjoyed an average annual growth rate of 13 percent over the past five years. Development in this sector is indeed gathering speed.