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China places record order for Taiwan flat screens

by Staff Writers
Taipei (AFP) Jan 11, 2010
Taiwan's liquid crystal display makers have received the largest ever order from China, planning to sign a contract worth five billion US dollars next week, a Taipei-based trade official said Monday.

The order, which is up from 4.4 billion dollars for the entire year 2009, has been filed jointly by nine Chinese television makers, said Wang Chih-kang, head of the quasi-official Taiwan External Trade Development Council.

Three Taiwanese liquid crystal display suppliers are scheduled to sign the contracts on January 20 in Beijing, he told reporters.

Ties between Taiwan and China have improved fast since Beijing-friendly Ma Ying-jeou became president of the island in 2008 on a platform of boosting trade links with the mainland and allowing in more Chinese tourists.

To help secure the improved ties, Beijing sent a spate of delegations to Taiwan last year purchasing 14 billion dollars worth of goods, which Beijing said shielded the island from the full impact of the global financial crisis.

Wang said China plans to send 10 similar procurement delegations to Taiwan this year.

Taiwan and China have been ruled separately since the end of a civil war in 1949, but Beijing claims the island as part of its territory and believes reunification is only a question of time.

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