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Ministry of Economic Affairs,R.O.C.

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2019-12-18 17:00
Department of Investment Services
Dr. Kai Beckman, CEO of Merck's Performance Materials Division and Executive Board Member, awarded the Medal of Economic Contribution
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On December 18, 2019, Minister Jong-Chin Shen of the Ministry of Economic Affairs awarded the Medal of Economic Contribution to Dr. Kai Beckmann of the Merck Group. Dr. Beckmann is the CEO of Merck's Performance Materials business division and a member of Merck's Executive Board. The award was presented in recognition of Merck's sustained investment in Taiwan, including the selection of Taiwan as its Asia-Pacific R&D Center, and Merck's overall outstanding contributions to the development of Taiwan's semiconductor and display industries.

Merck is the world's oldest chemical and pharmaceutical company, and also the world's largest supplier of liquid crystal display materials. The company focuses on the development of cutting edge specialty chemical, pharmaceutical, and biotech products. Merck is a leader in developing breakthrough technologies using innovative materials, and its materials play a key role in removing bottlenecks and creating new devices for the advancement of next-generation technologies in areas such as artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things, and big data.

Dr. Beckmann expressed optimism regarding Taiwan's semiconductor and display industries and Merck's future investment in Taiwan. Merck's "New Technology Application and R&D Center" was established in Taoyuan in 2013. This center focuses on developing key materials for new areas such as OLED, 3D technology, and flexible panels. Such materials help Taiwanese manufacturers shorten their R&D schedules and seize new market opportunities. In 2017, Merck opened an "IC Application Materials R&D Center" in the Kaohsiung Science Park. This facility develops materials for thin-film nano-process deposition and semiconductor packaging, helping to meet the needs of next generation processes in Taiwan's semiconductor industry. In addition, it promotes industrial-academic cooperation with institutions such as National Chiao Tung University and the Industrial Technology Research Institute. These efforts help promote the competitiveness of Taiwan's semiconductor and liquid crystal display industries in terms of both technology and human talent.

At the ceremony, Minister Shen emphasized Taiwan's central role in the global high tech industry, and noted its position as having the world's most complete supply chains in areas such as semiconductors, panels, and communications equipment. Taiwan is a leader in process technologies and has leading edge manufacturing capabilities in areas such as 5G, AI, and the Internet of Things. Minister Shen said that Taiwan's competitive position has become even more important in light of the US-China conflicts over trade and technology, which have made information security an even more important issue for international manufacturers. Taiwan's comprehensive protection of intellectual property rights, as well as the advantages it offers in terms of software and hardware integration, have combined to make Taiwan a top location for investment by international firms.

In addition, domestic companies such as TSMC, Micron Taiwan, Winbond and Powerchip have multiple new investment plans for Taiwan amounting to as much as NT$2.72 trillion. All of these factors are poised to provide Merck with even greater opportunities in Taiwan going forward. Minister Shen said he looks forward to this growth and the development of even more complete semiconductor supply chains in Taiwan, creating win-win situations for all involved.

The MOEA thus recognized the contributions of Dr. Beckmann and Merck in promoting the development of Taiwan's semiconductor and display industries by presenting Dr. Beckmann with the Medal of Economic Contribution. The ceremony was attended by the heads of many relevant government units, as well as leading representatives from industry, chambers of commerce and the Taiwan representative offices of the European Union and Germany.

Department of Investment Services, Ministry of Economic Affairs
Spokesperson:James Chang, Deputy Director General

Business Contact:Ying-Ju Chen, Section Chief