Taiwan's June export orders forecast to have grown: ministry

Taipei, July 20 (CNA) Taiwan is expected to report growth in export orders for June from a month earlier, and possibly year-on-year, snapping a four-month decline, the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said Saturday.
The MOEA is scheduled to release June export orders data on July 22. It said as global demand for mobile devices remains on the rise and outbound sales in plastics and chemical products have showed signs of stabilizing, the orders received by local exporters for June was likely to rise.
In addition, there have been signs that a decline in orders placed to local base metal and machinery manufacturers has been eased to some extent, which also indicated Taiwan's export orders for June was improving, the ministry said.
In May, the value of export orders received by companies in Taiwan totaled US$36.33 billion, down 0.4 percent from a year earlier, marking the fourth consecutive month for the country to post a year-on-year decline in export orders. The May export order data, however, was better than a previous market estimate of a 1.1 percent decline.
The information and communication technology (ICT), plastics/ rubber, and chemical sectors saw growth in export orders in May from a year earlier, while other sectors such as electronics, precision instruments, basic metal and machinery experienced drops in orders. Taiwan's export orders for May placed by Europe and Japan fell 4.3 percent, and 5.7 percent, respectively, from a year earlier. Meanwhile, orders from China/Hong Kong, the United States, and six major ASEAN nations -- Thailand, Singapore, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia - rose 3.3 percent, 2.5 percent and 4.2 percent year-on-year.
Taiwan's government has lowered its forecast for domestic economic growth for 2013 to 2.40 percent, from 3.59 percent. It has cited falling exports and slowing private consumption as a cause. In the first five months of this year, Taiwan's export orders fell 1.3 percent from a year earlier to about US$174 billion. The MOEA cited a survey as saying that the June directional movement index for export order value stood at 53.3. A reading of above 50 in the index means that the value of export orders could increase from May.
The directional movement indexes for export order value in the ICT and electronics sectors hit 59.7 and 57.2, respectively, indicating the two sectors are expected to report higher export orders than a month earlier, the ministry said. However, the directional movement index in the precision instrument sector was only 38.3, indicating the sector's export orders could fall from May, the ministry added. (By Huang Chiao-wen and Frances Huang)