Taiwan - Country Commercial Guide
Distribution and Sales Channels
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The most common distribution route in Taiwan moves products from suppliers to distributors, from distributors to retailers, and then from retailers to consumers. Some suppliers shorten distribution channels by distributing products directly through retailers. Multi-level marketing is common in Taiwan, and direct selling organizations are well established. Foreign firms, especially those selling high-end merchandise, often rely on agents to connect them with distributors. However, for certain products, such as apparel, distribution channels tend to be more complex.

Among Taiwan’s seven major ports, Kaohsiung and Keelung are the biggest, handling the bulk of traded goods and serving as the starting point for island-wide distribution networks. Also important is the Port of Taichung, which handles raw materials and commodities for energy and heavy industry. 

Using an Agent or Distributor

Most foreign firms gain their initial foothold in the Taiwan market by appointing a local agent. The prospect of an agent relationship appeals to many Taiwan firms. If the size of the market warrants, companies may consider setting up a branch office or subsidiary in Taiwan. 

The American Institute in Taiwan’s (AIT) Commercial Section provides several services to help U.S. firms export their goods and services to Taiwan. Through the AIT office in Taipei (covering northern and central Taiwan) and the branch office in Kaohsiung (covering southern Taiwan), we offer a variety of resources and services to help U.S. companies enter the Taiwan market, including market research, agent or distributor searches, trade missions, trade shows, business matchmaking, due diligence checks on potential business partners, product launches, and commercial advocacy. To receive this assistance, the first step is to contact your local U.S. Export Assistance Center to discuss which services you may require. These offices can help U.S. exporters determine which international markets are suitable for their products and services. Alternatively, contact information for the AIT Commercial Section is as follows: 

AIT Commercial Section (Taipei) Tel: 886-2-2162-2000 

Fax: 886-2-2162-2519 

Email: office.taipei@trade.gov 


AIT Commercial Section (Kaohsiung) Tel: 886-7-335-5006 

Fax: 886-7-338-0551 

Email: office.kaohsiung@trade.gov

Establishing an Office

To establish a subsidiary, branch, or representative office in Taiwan there are logistical issues to consider and an array of forms and procedures to complete.  For example, a Chinese language company name is required.  It is strongly recommended that new firms consult with local attorneys and accountants to identify relevant industry issues and complete all necessary steps for establishing a new entity.   

The Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) provides information on investing and setting up a company in Taiwan through the InvesTaiwan office. InvesTaiwan can also be reached by phone at +886-2-2311-2031.

For the latest Investment Climate Statement (ICS) which includes information on investment and business environments in foreign economies pertinent to establishing and operating an office and to hiring employees, visit the U.S. Department of Department of State’s Image removed.Investment Climate Statements website.

Direct Marketing

Multi-level marketing has become a lucrative second job for many Taiwan professionals. Recent figures indicate that more than 3.64 million (16 percent) of Taiwan’s total population of 23 million work for multi-level sales businesses. These firms mainly specialize in healthcare, skincare, and household products. (Source: Fair Trade Commission)

Joint Ventures/Licensing

Foreign investors who wish to establish new enterprises in Taiwan through joint ventures, technical licensing, or other methods must file an application for approval by Taiwan’s Investment Commission (IC) of the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA). The IC typically issues a decision within two months of receiving a completed application. Capital should not be remitted for a joint venture investment until approvals have been obtained. Information regarding regulations for approval and consideration of foreign investment or technical cooperation is available at the Investment Commission website.

Express Delivery

Express delivery is commonly used in Taiwan. The fastest door-to-door services may take as few as two to three business days to reach Taiwan from major U.S. cities. On average, express delivery from the U.S. to Taiwan takes about three to five business days. Major Express Delivery Companies in Taiwan:


Airlife Freight (Taiwan) Corp. https://www.airlife-freight.com/ 

1F, No. 8, Lane 389, Sec. 5, Nanking E. Rd., Taipei 105, Taiwan 

Tel: 886-2-27647711 

Fax: 886-2-2769-2558 

Email: airlife@airlife-freight.com 


CNA International Logistics Co., Ltd. https://www.caie.com.tw/ 

2F, No. 158, Sec. 1, Xinsheng S. Rd., Taipei 10061, Taiwan Tel: 886-2-2394-6699 

Fax: 886-2-2394-7799 

Email: service@caie.com.tw


DHL Taiwan 


1F, No. 82, Sec. 2, Jianguo N. Rd., Zhongshan Dist., Taipei 10416, Taiwan Tel: 886-2-2503-6858 

Fax: 886-2-2505-0768 


Federal Express Corporation (FedEx), Taiwan https://www.fedex.com/en-tw/home.html# 

9F, No. 162, Sec. 2, Chang’an E. Rd., Zhongshan Dist., Taipei 10491, Taiwan Tel: 886-2-2181-1973 


UPS International Inc. – Taiwan Branch Office https://www.ups.com/tw/en/help-center/contact.page 

Address: 2F, No. 361, Danan Rd., Shilin Dist., Taipei 11161, Taiwan Customer Toll Free: 0800-365-868 

Overseas dial-in: +886-2-2383-3868 


United China Air Freight Co., Ltd. https://www.ucf.com.tw/?lang=en 

1F, No. 105, Sec. 2, Jiuzong Rd., Neihu Dist., Taipei 11494, Taiwan Tel: 886-2-8791-9166 

Fax: 886-2-8791-9260 

Email: service@ucf.com.tw 


Due Diligence

Prior to establishing a new relationship with a Taiwan company, it is wise to conduct a background check on the company. Though Taiwan’s privacy laws often make it difficult to collect background information on individuals, local attorneys, accountants, and trade/industry associations can be excellent sources of information. 

The AIT Commercial Section offers an International Company Profile (ICP) service to help U.S. firms conduct background checks in Taiwan.  

Below please find our services in Taiwan: