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Lean Production in Taiwan: A Digital Revolution

In Taiwan, the collaborative efforts of the Industrial Bureau of the Ministry of Economic Affairs (IDB) and the Taiwan Association of Machinery Industry (TAMI) have been pivotal in propelling the nation’s industrial landscape into the digital age through the Lean Production Subsidy Programme.

Image credit: moea.gov.tw

Since its inception in 2020, this initiative has been a beacon of hope for various sectors of the industry, spanning machinery manufacturing, facility production, component fabrication, and even the plastic and rubber industries.

A remarkable feat, the programme has extended its support to 96 companies, leaving an indelible mark on the landscape of digitalisation in Taiwan. These achievements have not only garnered attention but have also won the approval of industry practitioners who recognise the transformative power of digital LEAN.

At the heart of Lean Production lies the fundamental principle of eliminating waste. It’s about streamlining processes, reducing inefficiencies, and optimising productivity. The ultimate goal is to enhance product quality without the need for additional manpower or resources. In essence, it’s a win-win scenario where products meet stringent quality control standards, delighting customers, while the costs go down, and profit margins go up.

Looking back to 2016, the Smart Machinery Promotion Programme, also spearheaded by the IDB, laid the foundations for a groundbreaking smart machinery industry ecosystem. It was during this time that Lean Production was identified as a key technology competence index for driving intelligent progress. Fast forward to today, and it has proven to be an astute decision, perfectly aligning with the evolving needs of the industry.

The benefits of Lean Production have been underscored in various industry events, such as the Lean Production and Digital Integration Seminar and the Taiwan-Japan TPS Elite Forum in 2023. Industry practitioners have experienced firsthand how Lean Production can enhance their operations.

Chih-ching Yang, Deputy Director-General of IDB, emphasised that the transformative impact of digitising the production system. This digitalisation serves as a catalyst for upgrading production lines within factories, a crucial factor in staying competitive in the global market.

Besides, the call for Carbon Footprint Verification (CFV) has grown louder, with many countries and buyers demanding it. As the world pushes for Net Zero Emissions, energy efficiency in manufacturing is paramount. The less energy consumed during production, the more competitive the products become. Taiwan is not just keeping pace with these global demands but is poised to lead by example.

The IDB remains steadfast in its commitment to promote the implementation of Lean across various industries and to collaborate with domestic businesses. The focus is not limited to the shop floor; it extends to every facet of business, including research and development, and overall business management. The ongoing efforts to eliminate waste in on-site materials, manpower, and inventory control represent a multifaceted approach towards making industries more efficient and eco-friendly.

In the grander scheme of things, this initiative aligns with the broader call for businesses to meet ESG (Environmental/Social/Governance) demands and fulfil Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Lean Production isn’t just a business strategy; it’s a philosophy that nurtures a sense of responsibility toward the environment and society. It’s a way to create a future where businesses thrive while being responsible stewards of the world’s resources.

The IDB cited that Taiwan’s commitment to Lean Production and digitalisation, as seen through the collaborative efforts of IDB and TAMI, stands as a testament to the nation’s vision for an industrial future that combines innovation and sustainability. Hence, the results have been nothing short of remarkable, and the journey towards Lean, digital, and eco-friendly industries is set to continue.


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