With Taiwan's help, Davao City poised to become 'smart city'

For Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), Davao City is poised to become a smart city because of its potential and is offering to help the city to be developed into a smart city through innovations.

A smart city is a designation given to a city that incorporates information and communication technologies (ICT) to enhance the quality and performance of urban services.  

“We want to transform Davao as smart city and we can offer our expertise. Because smart city is very comprehensive,” said Ambassador Michael Peiyung Hsu, Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in the Philippines during the opening of Taiwan Expo 2019 at SM Lanang Premier’s SMX Convention Center in Lanang on Friday.

TAITRA Chairman James Huang described Davao City as the engine boosting regional economy and that their coming to Davao City is timely as they want to show the best Taiwan has to offer in terms of technology innovations in the areas of smart city, smart healthcare, Taiwan lifestyle, green technology, and agriculture and fishery industries.

Agriculture and fisheries are two of Davao’s most important industries showing potential to become an innovation hub in various fields.
Hsu said they want to help the region in precision farming. In fact, the region’s Department of Agriculture (DA) will send a team to Taiwan to study on precision farming.

According to Huang, Taiwan is famous for agriculture technology and they are offering smart agriculture technology that can enhance efficiency not only on land but on fishery industry as well.

“The future of fishery is technology. Taiwanese companies have their latest technologies to help you upgrade and transform your fishery industry,” he said.

Taiwan is the powerhouse of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and according to Huang Taiwan offers some of the best semi-conductor in ICT technology and solutions.

“We will show you our latest innovations. We believe Taiwan’s technology can fuel the Philippines’ growth and help your economy to thrive even higher,” he said.

Taiwan also has the best healthcare services. During the expo, the Taiwan Healthcare Pavilion promoted their smart medical industry. The pavilion assembled eight high-quality health industry companies of Taiwan that presented the specialties and strengthens Taiwan’s health industry including medical services, smart medical equipment and devices.  
“In our healthcare pavilion you can see how Taiwanese companies is among the world’s best in terms of technology,” Huang said.

The expo also highlighted Taiwan’s edge in technological innovations pavilion wherein it displayed the country’s most elite, world-class brands in technology to Filipino buyers and industry traders. Among the featured companies is the Geosat Aerospace and technology Inc that features that application of commercial drone system in building smart city in today’s lifestyle. There was also the Cal-Comp technology (Philippines) that showcased the “AI Robot”,  
“In the past we focus on Luzon island and we have direct flight via Cebu in Visayas so Visayas has more exposure to Taiwan. Now we will actually work in Mindanao. Let Mindanao has more exposure to the people in Taiwan. This year TAITRA chose Davao to be the place of holding the event as they have noticed the potential of Davao. It is meaningful to hold this event in the city of President Rodrigo Duterte as it marks the milestone of the relationship between Taiwan and the city of Davao,” Hsu said.  

The first of its kind in Davao, the expo encourages more cooperation between the Philippines and Taiwan. This global expo brought Taiwanese companies seeking to forge business collaboration with their Filipino counterparts.

Organized by Taiwan’s Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) and TAITRA, which is a non-profit trade organization, the expo is the country’s main platform for its companies to explore business opportunities with their counterparts in Southeast Asia and South Asia.  

Around 100 Taiwan exhibitors attended and showcased their expertise in various industries such as technology, agriculture, design, medical care, and tourism. The event also featured Taiwanese companies covering a wide range of categories such as Smart City, Taiwan Lifestyle, healthcare, agriculture, fisheries, and Taiwan tourism.

“This is an event of great significance because it enable us to share the fruits of technological and industrial development of Taiwan. The event also provide opportunities to further enhance the industry technological and agrioucltural cooperation between Taiwan and the Philippines,” Hsu said.  

With the Taiwan expo in Davao, organizers are optimistic that bilateral relations between Taiwan and the Philippines can go further in business, tourism, industries and any other fields.

Hsu is also hopeful that a Davao-Taiwan direct flight will be established in the near future so that Davao and Taiwan businessmen can work together in priority the areas.

“Soon this connectivity will be established and all what is needed is we have to understand each other and know each other better then we have to find out how we can achieve our goals step by step,” he added.

Hsu is optimistic that Taiwan Expo 2019 will lay the foundation to broaden the cooperation not only to trade and investment but also in culture, tourism, higher education between Taiwan and Davao.

“Here in this great city of Davao, we see new beginnings, new hopes, and new dreams. Together we’ll make new journeys, seize new opportunities and realize new prospects,” he said.