Taiwanese textile company to expand in Vietnam: report

By Dam Tuan   October 19, 2016 | 12:43 am PT
'We cannot think of a better place to build our new manufacturing base than Vietnam.'

Taiwan’s leading textile company Far Eastern New Century hopes to capitalize on the country's cheap labor.

On Monday, the Nikkei Asian Review reported the company plans to shift operations from China to Vietnam.

“We cannot think of a better place to build our new manufacturing base than Vietnam, which offers cheap, high-quality labor, and stands to possibly benefit from the Trans-Pacific Partnership,” the Japanese paper quoted Eric Hu, president of Far Eastern New Century, as saying.

Hu said the company expects to triple the annual output of its fabric-dyeing and finishing plants in Binh Duong Province.

He also reaffirmed a plan announced earlier this year to more than double the company's investment in Vietnam from $300 million to $760 million.

Formosa paid Vietnam $500 million, in August, for releasing an untold quantity of toxic waste into the East Sea. The government is in the process of distributing the funds to affected fishermen and businesses. The head of Far Eastern New Century said his operations won't be affected negatively by fellow Taiwanese conglomerate Formosa Plastics Group, which caused an ecological disaster in the center of the country.

The textiles industry has become notorious, in recent years, for using obsolete, polluting dyeing technology.

In May, provincial authorities in Ba Ria-Vung Tau shut down the dyeing operations of the Mei Sheng Textiles Viet Nam Ltd Co following repeated violations of the country's environmental and water resource managment regulations.

The move represented the seventh shut-down of the Taiwanese firm's 28 yarn and fabrics-dying machines for an illegal water discharge. In 2010, a similar scandal erupted due to similar practices at the Pangrim Neotex firm of South Korea.

Vietnam has become a destination for foreign polluters seeking cheap labor and low trade tariffs. The country's rogues gallery includes MSG producers Vedan and Miwon.

Far East Vietnam's dyeing plant is the company's third-largest facility in the world behind the company's factories in China and Taiwan, which mainly produce yarn, fabric and synthetic fibers. It currently supplies textile materials for global brands including Nike, Adidas and H&M.

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