RALEIGH – The state of North Carolina has opened a new trade office – or what it calls an “investment office” – in Taiwan.

The operation is the ninth operated world wide. The purpose is “to secure investment partnerships from Southeast Asian companies and organizations, including those in Taiwan and China” according to the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina and the N.C. Department of Commerce announced the office. It’s located in Taipei, Taiwan’s capital. The office opened Oct. 5.

“The office is staffed by the EDPNC and the EDPNC handles the costs of the office,” a spokesperson said.

Interestingly, Taiwan is of special interest to Christopher Chung, the CEO of the EDPNC.

“Taiwanese companies are increasing foreign direct investment in the U.S., notably led by the microelectronic and clean energy sectors,” said Chung. “North Carolina recognizes the resiliency of Taiwan business across many sectors and values a stronger partnership built on our commitment to innovation, collaboration, and continued growth.

“As a Taiwanese American whose parents immigrated from the country, I am thrilled North Carolina is furthering its relationship with Taiwan,” he added. “The EDPNC and I look forward to establishing our Taiwan office to connect with Taiwanese and other regional businesses and stakeholders to promote North Carolina as an ideal business location.”

Other offices are located in Canada, Japan, Mexico, Singapore, Germany, Poland, Belgium and Dubai.

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“Opening an office in Taiwan solidifies North Carolina’s commitment to fostering global partnerships, strengthening international ties and promoting economic growth,” said North Carolina Secretary of Commerce Machelle Baker Sanders, in the announcement. “The state has seen more than $5.1 billion invested from Southeast Asian companies since 2013, and we will continue to build bridges connecting North Carolina to the world, enhancing opportunities for trade, innovation and partnerships.”

Taiwan and North Carolina have an existing trade and commerce relationship. The EDPNC notes that several Taiwan-based companies including Anderson Group, HTC Global Services, Everest Textiles, and Delta Electronics “have pledged more than $52 million in investments and 846 jobs in North Carolina since 2013.”

In 2022 North Carolina exports to Taiwan totaled $372.6 million and imports were $1.68 billion.