Defense specialist AMS Group to open office in Taiwan by year-end

Washington, May 22 (CNA) AMS Group Inc., which supplies innovative technologies and equipment with integrated logistics support services to global customers in the defense and security markets, is slated to open an office in Taipei by the end of this year.

Michael Perry, a senior vice president for the group, made the announcement Tuesday following a seminar organized by the Global Taiwan Institute (GTI) on U.S.-Taiwan cooperation in the defense industry.

The GTI is a non-profit policy incubator for ideas that enhance U.S.-Taiwan relations and engages Taiwan in its own right, according to its website.

The AMS Group has been considering the move for a while because of the potential growth in Taiwan's market and decided to go ahead with the idea now because the timing is right, Perry said.

People will be sent to Taipei and an office will be opened by the end of this year or earlier, he said.

According to a report by GTI researcher David An, Taiwan's domestic defense industry is capable of meeting half of its military equipment needs, but international support is still needed for advanced equipment such as stealth jets, submarines, and vertical take-off and landing aircraft.

Taiwan's domestic defense industry has annual revenue of US$2.3 billion a year, or 23 percent of Taiwan's defense budget, but that is heavily concentrated among a few big companies backed by the government, the report said.

The revenue of some 200 other small and medium-sized businesses supplying the military totals only US$33 million, the report noted.

Taiwan should consider making its defense industry more competitive economically as it moves to enhance and upgrade its self-defense capabilities, suggested Rupert Hammond-Chambers, president of the U.S.-Taiwan Business Council.

The defense industry in Taiwan and the U.S. should further strengthen two-way cooperation and make it a part of the global supply chain, Hammond-Chambers said, contending that the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump should show stronger backing for Taiwan.

F. S. Mei (???), director of the U.S.-based Taiwan Security Analysis Center, said the U.S. can greatly help Taiwan in this field because Taiwan still lacks the technology to integrate the sophisticated systems and components of advanced submarines and jet fighters.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel