Taiwan, Japan to develop broadband technologies

TAIPEI, TAIWAN (AP) - Three big Japanese corporations may join Taiwan in developing cutting-edge broadband technologies that will allow them to jointly tap China’s vast telecommunications market, an official said Friday.

Fujitsu Ltd., NEC Corp. and Mitsubishi Corp. have expressed an interest in the offer to develop WiMax technologies together with Taiwanese firms, said Yiin Chi-ming, a Taiwanese state minister.

Yiin said he expects to sign a memorandum of understanding with the three Japanese firms to set up a company involved in WiMax system integration when he leads a trade mission to Japan next week.

WiMAX _ short for Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access _ expands broadband wireless access over longer distances of up to 30 miles (50 kilometers) and reduces the cost of implementing broadband.

Taiwan has sought foreign investment in the wake of a landmark trade deal the island signed last month with China, under which the mainland would slash tariffs on goods produced in Taiwan.

The trade pact, known as Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement, will also cover a broad range of services, Yiin said.

“Foreign firms can benefit from Taiwanese companies’ knowledge of the Chinese market and their strengths in product innovation and commercialization,” he said.

The trade group will also visit other Japanese firms to discuss joint projects in electric car, electronic components and energy-related technologies, he said.

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