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Ministry eyes US biotech cooperation

Source: Taipei Times

A visit to the US by a Taiwanese delegation has opened the door to dialogue on cooperation between biotechnology companies, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said yesterday.

During the trip from Sept. 11 to Saturday, the delegation led by Deputy Minister of Economic Affairs Chen Chern-chyi (陳正祺) visited five prominent US companies to solicit investments in Taiwan, the ministry said in a statement.

Those visits created an opportunity for the potential start of discussions between biotechnology companies in the US and Taiwan on investments, under the contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) model, the ministry said.

Under that model, pharmaceutical companies partner with others in the industry that are categorized as CDMOs to outsource drug development and manufacturing.

Potential cooperation between Taiwanese and US pharmaceutical companies could include the development and production of medical consumables and minimally invasive surgical instruments.

However, the ministry did not say when the discussions were expected to start or which US companies would be involved.

One of the Taiwanese delegates told the Central News Agency that two biotechnology firms in the US had expressed interest in starting discussions with Taiwanese companies, but the delegate did not name the firms.

In the push for US investments in Taiwan, Chen’s delegation also hosted a conference in New York which was attended by more than 50 representatives from prominent think tanks, investment advisory companies, private equity firms, industrial associations and other enterprises, the ministry said.

At the conference, Peter Chow (周鉅原), a Taiwanese professor at City University of New York, called on Washington to sign a bilateral trade agreement with Taipei, while some of the US participants said Washington should forge closer trade and investment ties with Taipei, the ministry said.

Chen and his delegation also visited SkySkopes, a geospatial data solutions company that specializes in aerial data acquisition through the use of advanced crewed and uncrewed aircraft equipped with cutting edge sensor solutions, it said.

At that company, the delegation met with its founder and partner Matt Dunlevy, who said he hoped to visit Taiwan to hold discussions with potential business partners, it added.

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