Startup to Taiwan

Trends and opportunities

The market

Taiwan is an accessible and well-regulated market with strong IP protection, ICT and manufacturing industries. It is geographically located at the heart of the Asia-Pacific region, and has served for decades as a hub linking developed Western economies and emerging Asian markets. This makes it an ideal partner and springboard for Australian companies interested in product prototyping, concept testing, manufacturing, and expansion into the Asian market.

In 2016, the Taiwan Government launched the Asian Silicon Valley Development Plan, and later the Asian Silicon Valley Agency (ASVDA) to revitalise technology industries and increase connections to global tech hubs. The plan’s primary objectives are to promote innovation and R&D for devices and applicatons in the internet of things (IoT), that aims to optimise Taiwan’s startup and entrepreneurship ecosystem by increasing talent supply, providing business expansion capital, and adjusting laws and regulations.

Opportunities

Taiwan as a tech-based economy is always on the lookout for disruptive technologies and solutions that have commercial potential. The market is interested in attracting international startups to use Taiwan as a base for product development and joint venture is high on Taiwan’s innovation agenda. There are a wide range of incentives to encourage startups to come to Taiwan. Often this includes subsidised travel, accommodation and tailored programs to suit individual needs. 

Austrade Taipei is identifying relevant programs for Australian startups’ participation. Listed below are a number of programs offered in 2018 with packages for 2019 to be confirmed. If you are interested in any of these please contact Jane Lu, Austrade Taipei.

  • Startup Global Program — Garage+
    Area of Interest: AI Big Data, IoT Smart Devices, Digital Health, AR VR, Robotics, Green Tech
    Date: 1st batch – May to June, 2nd batch – Nov to Dec

  • Taiwan Tech Arena — Ministry of Science and Technology
    Area of Interest: AI or advanced technology in IoT, ICT, biotechnology, healthcare, robotics, smart city, fintech/insurance technology
    Date: 1st batch – August
    2nd batch – October

  • Global Startup Talents @ Taipei — Taipei City Government
    Area of Interest: ICT, IoT, Biotechnology, AI, AR/VR, Deep technology
    Date: 1st batch – June
    2nd batch – TBA

  • Creative Expo Taipei's Talent 100 Project (only accepts applicants recommended by Austrade)— Ministry of Culture
    Area of Interest: Characters, illustrations, comics and digital multimedia creation (gaming included)
    Date: April

  • Smart City Summit and Expo AI 50 — Taipei Computer Association
    Area of Interest: AI technology (accelerator/incubators that recommend AI startups with smart city innovations and send applicants)
    Date: March

  • FinTech Taipei — FinTechBase
    Area of Interest: AI technology (accelerator/incubators that recommend AI startups with smart city innovations and send applicants)
    Date: March

  • TRANS Conference by H. Spectrum — Foxconn YongLIn Healthcare Foundaton
    Area of Interest: Digital health, medical devices or healthcare IoT
    Date: September 

Competitive Environment

Australian startups looking at applying for these programs face strong competition from startups from around the world, including USA, Canada, Israel, Japan, and South Korea.

Tariffs, regulations and customs

Australian startups interested in staying in Taiwan for over 90 days and who meet eligibility criteria can apply for an entrepreneur visa.

Marketing your products and services

For industry specific information please refer to the relevant Austrade Taipei industry report.

Market entry

If your startup is interested in entering the Taiwan market, we strongly recommend your participation in one of the programs outlined above. Besides providing the opportunity to learn more about the market, these programs often contain a networking and business matching element that gives companies access to key contacts and partners. Austrade Taipei is also very active in promoting Australian capabilities and expertise in Taiwan, and has strong connections to local industries and relevant government bodies, that we can leverage to support you and assist with other value-adding activities. If you are a startup interested in Taiwan please contact Jane Lu, Austrade Taipei.

Please note: This list of websites and resources is not definitive. Inclusion in this list does not imply endorsement by Austrade. The information provided is a guide only. The content is for information and carries no warranty; as such, the addressee must exercise their own discretion in its use. Australia’s anti-bribery laws apply overseas and Austrade will not provide business related services to any party who breaches the law and will report credible evidence of any breach. For further information, please see foreign bribery information and awareness pack.

Contact details

The Australian Trade and Investment Commission – Austrade – contributes to Australia's economic prosperity by helping Australian businesses, education institutions, tourism operators, governments and citizens as they:

  • develop international markets
  • win productive foreign direct investment
  • promote international education
  • strengthen Australia's tourism industry
  • seek consular and passport services.

Working in partnership with Australian state and territory governments, Austrade provides information and advice that can help Australian companies reduce the time, cost and risk of exporting. We also administer the Export Market Development Grant Scheme and offer a range of services to Australian exporters in growth and emerging markets.