Success tips when doing business in Taiwan
- It is very important to understand the business culture in Taiwan:
- Office hours usually ranges from 9am to 5.30pm, every Monday to Friday;
- Taiwanese businessmen are hard bargainers and they may attempt to earn discounts in business deals by wearing the other party down;
- Remember to be patient and not push too hard or too fast during negotiations;
- Business cards should be printed in English on one side and traditional Chinese on the other;
- It is advantageous to bring a team of up to four people to Taiwan because it can portray your status and image as well as the seriousness of the meeting.
- It is necessary to know how to entertain in Taiwan:
- In Taiwan, knowing how to entertain will significantly increase your chances of succeeding in business negotiations. Therefore, entertaining should not be treated as a waste of time;
- Dining can take up a lot of time as a dinner banquet can consist of as many as twenty courses;
- Toasting is common and it is done before and during meals;
- It is considered polite to leave some rice in the bowl after you are done eating;
- The Taiwanese host will always pay the bill. It is considered polite for the guest to offer to pay, but do not insist or fight over the bill.
- It is essential to forge friendships in Taiwan because:
- Friendship is valued in business and Taiwanese businessmen will want to know you on a personal level before deciding whether you are committed and trustworthy enough to do business with;
- It is beneficial to have connections in Taiwan because it can help influence social, political and commercial relationships;
- Hence, you should choose a partner that brings a lot to the table, including local knowledge and personal relations and contacts that are necessary for your business to succeed in.
- Gender equality in Taiwan:
- Although Taiwan is a traditionally male-dominated society, foreign businesswomen are treated with respect.
Interesting facts about Taiwan
- Some basic information of Taiwan includes:
- The official language of Taiwan is Mandarin. However, the 70% of the population are ethnic Hoklo and speak the Hokkien dialect of Min nan (Southern Min) Chinese as their mother tongue;
- Taiwan is considerably densely populated with around 23 million people residing in the country;
- Taiwan has a tropical climate, with a monsoonal rainy season from January through March. It is also a frequently affected by Pacific typhoons;
- The island was given the name “Formosa” (meaning “beautiful”) by the Portuguese in the 16th century when they first laid eyes on it.
- Some facts about Taiwan’s trade include:
- China has been Taiwan’s largest trade partner since 2003;
- Japan is Taiwan’s second-largest trading partner with 13.3% of total trade, representing 20.7% of Taiwan’s imports;
- The United States is now Taiwan’s third-largest trade partner, buying 11.5% of Taiwan’s exports and supplying 10.1% of its imports;
- The United States, Hong Kong, China, and Japan together account for 60% of Taiwan’s exports, and the United States, Japan, and China are responsible for almost 46% of Taiwan’s imports;
- Taiwan is one of the world’s largest producers of computing goods. The island nation has an extensive, well-established network of industrial zones and a growing number of high-technology industry clusters, which are supported by high-quality human resources.
- Other interesting facts include:
- Taipei 101, also known as the Taipei Financial Center, was once the world’s tallest building. Now, however, larger buildings in the Middle East and elsewhere in Asia have relegated it outside of the global top 5;
- With more than 9,100 convenience stores in an area of 35,980 km2, Taiwan has Asia Pacific’s and perhaps the world’s highest density of convenience stores per person;
- Baseball is Taiwan’s most popular sport. NBA player Jeremy Lin is perhaps Taiwan’s most famous sporting export;
- Milk tea with tapioca pearls called ‘bubble tea’ or ‘boba’ originated in Taiwan in the 1980s and became a favourite Asian drink.
Frequently asked questions
What is the minimum number of directors required for a Taiwan company?Private limited companies in Taiwan require only one director. A public company needs three directors.
What is the minimum number of shareholders required for a Taiwan company?Only one shareholder is needed to start a limited company in Taiwan.
Is a Taiwan company required to submit an annual tax return and/or financial statements?Yes, a Taiwan company is required to submit audited financial statements annually.
How much tax does a Taiwan Company pay?Taiwanese companies pay corporate tax rate of 17% on all income generated in Taiwan. The Taiwan government has approved two tax cuts recently, reducing the tax rate from its former level of 25%. In addition a Taiwanese company is obliged to register for value added tax (VAT), which is levied at a rate of 5%.