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Taipei City E-Commerce Platform Helps Businesses Grow Exports

Taipei City E-Commerce Platform Helps Businesses Grow Exports The Taipei City Government is expanding its successful cross-sector e-commerce platform for industry and academia this year by inviting universities and colleges from all over Taiwan to join in. The City established its e-commerce platform in 2017, the first of this kind and scale in Taiwan.

A media event to kick off the Taipei City Public-Private E-Commerce Platform Project on March 13 was attended by Zhang Yuebo, Taiwan country manager for Alibaba Global Exchange, and Lin Hui-jun, Taiwan country manager for Amazon Global Selling. At the media event, the Department of Economic Development (DOED) introduced the e-commerce platform, which has already attracted 7 universities, 39 teams of professionals, and 211 college students. The universities currently active on the platform are: National Taipei University, National Taipei University of Business, Ming Chuan University, Shih Chien University, Hsing Wu University of Science and Technology, Takming University of Science and Technology University, Chihlee University of Technology. As another key activity of the platform, DOED organized a talent market in July 2018 where businesses were matched with e-commerce graduates and young professionals to bolster employment as well as Taiwan’s cross-border e-commerce capabilities.

“The e-commerce platform that we founded last year was the first in Taiwan to team up with the world’s top-three e-commerce giants Amazon, Alibaba, and eBay to develop a local e-commerce talent base,” explained DOED Commissioner Lin Chong-jie, adding that this year’s collaboration between industry and academia will further expand through training programs, traineeships, contests, and more, bridging the gap between colleges and companies, and quickly developing the e-commerce talent base that the city and the country needs. 

“Young people are apt at using and developing digital tools,” Lin noted, expressing confidence that the industry-academia collaboration occurring through the platform would boost students’ employability and help solve companies’ e-commerce staff shortages, which has become a considerable bottleneck in expanding international trade for Taiwan’s medium-sized enterprises. 

“Taiwan has a serious lack of e-commerce talent, due to vocational schools and colleges’ focus on traditional commerce. But business is going virtual, with online pricing platforms, virtual trade shows, web-based auctions, and others. We need much more talent to compete on those platforms,” said Cai Jian-lang, marketing director with Yishuo Integrated Marketing. With six years of e-commerce experience under his belt, Cai participated in the Taipei City Public-Private E-Commerce Platform Project last year and found it very useful. Corroborating Cai’s point, market research firm eMarketer forecasts that the global B2B and B2C e-commerce market will approach USD 1 trillion by 2020, and is unlikely to stop there. In a volatile global economy, e-commerce can spread and stabilize one’s exposure to market risks, and open up new Blue Oceans for them.

Last year, Taipei City Mayor Ko Wen-je formulated his policy vision that “In the next five years, e-commerce and logistics will upend Taipei’s business world and labor market.” 

In response to that vision, the city government rolled out three major activities last year: providing comprehensive business support services, fostering collaboration between industry and academia, and selecting inspiring benchmark businesses. Of these three activities, collaboration between colleges and companies has been leading, because expanding and upgrading a talent base for e-ecommerce is the most urgent task at hand to keep Taiwanese companies’ global commerce capabilities abreast with the times.

For further information on the Taipei City Public-Private E-Commerce Platform Project, please visit the project website at http://www.ieatpe.org.tw/t2w/ or phone the project manager Mr. Li at (02) 2581-3521 ext. 611. More information can also be found on the DOED website at https://www.doed.gov.taipei/ and the StartUP@Taipei website at https://www.startup.taipei/, which has easy add buttons for their Facebook, LINE, and Twitter accounts.