Taiwan Liposome Gets the Go-Ahead for a Hydroxychloroquine COVID-19 Study

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Paula Bronstein / Getty Images News via Getty ImagesTaiwan Liposome Co. Ltd. (NASDAQ: TLC) shares shot up on Wednesday after the firm announced that it would be able to move forward with its COVID-19 trial that uses hydroxychloroquine. In the past, hydroxychloroquine has been viewed as a controversial drug in terms of evaluating its efficacy in treating COVID-19, but now there seems to be a definitive ruling on it—at least in Australia and Taiwan.

In terms of the specifics, the company announced the receipt of ethical and scientific approval from the Bellberry Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) in Australia for the company’s Phase 1 clinical trial of TLC19 hydroxychloroquine liposome inhalation suspension for COVID-19.

The HREC is constituted in accordance with the requirements of the National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC), and it reviews clinical trial proposals to ensure that they are ethically and scientifically acceptable and have been developed in accordance with relevant standards and guidelines.

The approval comes following the acceptance of Taiwan Liposome’s investigational new drug (IND) application with the Taiwan Food and Drug Administration (TFDA) on Tuesday.

Ultimately, the Phase 1 study will evaluate the safety, tolerability and pharmacokinetics of single ascending doses of inhaled TLC19 in 30 healthy volunteers.

Management said that it is very much looking forward to launching TLC19’s Phase 1 trial with the support of experienced, high-quality partners in Taiwan as well as in Australia, which has an efficient and globally recognized regulatory environment with the bonus of government incentives and benefits and is a great place to conduct clinical trials for time-sensitive projects like TLC19.

Excluding Wednesday’s move, Taiwan Liposome stock had underperformed the broad markets with a retreat of about 18% year to date. In the past 52 weeks, the share price was down closer to 13%.

Taiwan

Taiwan September exports seen up for third month in row

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TAIPEI (Reuters) – Taiwan’s exports likely rose for a third straight month in September, up 6.6% from a year earlier as people bought electronic goods to work from home during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a median forecast of 12 analysts polled by Reuters.



a large ship in a body of water: FILE PHOTO: Cargo cranes are seen at Keelung Port during sunset hour in Keelung,


© Reuters/ANN WANG
FILE PHOTO: Cargo cranes are seen at Keelung Port during sunset hour in Keelung,

Taiwan is one of Asia’s major exporters, especially of technology goods, and its export trends are a key gauge of demand for tech gadgets worldwide. Its largest trading partner is China.

Forecasts ranged widely between a growth of 3.8% and 21.6% in the midst of uncertainties over the coronavirus outbreak that has disrupted global supply chains and sent major economies into recession.

Taiwan’s exports have been helped by demand for laptops and tablets to support the work-from-home trend during the pandemic that has forced millions around the world to abandon their offices.

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Exports in August jumped 8.3% from a year earlier to $31.17 billion, the highest monthly tally on record, boosted by Chinese telecom giant Huawei Technologies Co Ltd [HWT.UL] rushing to get in orders at Taiwanese firms before they have to comply with U.S. curbs that took effect last month.

Imports were seen up 3%, after rising 8.5% in August.

Trade data will be released on Wednesday.

The poll also showed deflationary pressures were expected to ease somewhat. The consumer price index (CPI) was tipped to fall 0.3% from a year earlier, compared with a drop of 0.33% in August. Inflation data will be released on Thursday.

(Poll compiled by Carol Lee; Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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In U.S.-China Tech Feud, Taiwan Feels Heat From Both Sides

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TAINAN, Taiwan — The United States and China are wrestling to lead the world in artificial intelligence, 5G wireless and other cutting-edge technologies. But the real wizardry that makes those advancements possible is being performed on a yam-shaped island that sits between them, geographically and politically.

On Taiwan’s southern rim, inside an arena-size facility stretched out among lush greenery and coconut palms, colossal machines are manipulating matter at unimaginably tiny scale. A powerful laser vaporizes droplets of molten tin, causing them to emit ultraviolet light. Mirrors focus the light into a beam, which draws features into a silicon wafer with the precision, as one researcher put it, “equivalent to shooting an arrow from Earth to hit an apple placed on the moon.”

The high-performance computer chips that emerge from this process go into the brains of the latest tech products from both sides of the Pacific. Or at least they did until last month, when the Trump administration effectively forced leading chip makers in Taiwan — and elsewhere — to stop taking orders from China’s proudest tech champion, the 5G giant Huawei.

The administration’s stranglehold on Huawei shows that for all of China’s economic progress, the United States still has final say over the technologies without which the modern world could not run. Chip making relies on American tools and know-how, which gives officials in Washington the power of life and death over semiconductor buyers and suppliers anywhere on the planet.

EMERGING MARKETS-SMIC curbs help S.Korean, Taiwan stocks after Chinese data boost

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    * Jakarta COVID-19 curbs extended 
    * Malaysia's ruling coalition wins state election; reduces
political uncertainty 
    * South Korea, Taiwan chipmakers rise after U.S tightens
exports
to China's SMIC

    Sept 28 (Reuters) - South Korean and Taiwanese stocks each
closed over 1% higher on Monday as investors priced in a boost
for their tech-focussed economies from tighter U.S. curbs on
China's biggest chipmaker, adding to a bright start to the week
for most Asian markets.
    Data showing profits at Chinese industrial firms grew for a
fourth straight month underpinned stock markets in the region,
although the extension of export curbs on Semiconductor
Manufacturing International Corp left
Shanghai's broad index marginally lower.
    The dual-listed chipmaker's shares plunged more than 5% in
both Shanghai and Hong Kong.

    Local chipmakers gained the most in Seoul, helping the
market rise 1.3% as the number of domestic COVID-19
infections fell to its lowest in nearly two months. Taiwan's
stock market ended nearly 2% higher. 
    "The knee-jerk reflex (to the SMIC decision), apart from
caution, may be for Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese chipmakers to
opportunistically benefit from substitution trades," analysts
from Japanese bank Mizuho said in a note.
    China's recovery has been among the few bright spots for the
global economy as a second wave of coronavirus infections mounts
in Europe, prompting countries to reimpose restrictions and
quashing hopes that the continent was turning a corner.
    One of a handful of Asian countries still struggling to get
COVID-19 numbers down is Indonesia and stocks there fell
0.5% as curbs were extended in the capital Jakarta. 
    India is also struggling, but markets there climbed
1.4% on hopes that the government would pump more money into
public sector banks.
    The Reserve Bank of India is expected to leave its key
interest rate unchanged on Thursday with inflation above its

EMERGING MARKETS-SMIC’s U.S. curbs aid S.Korean, Taiwan stocks after Chinese data boost

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    * Jakarta COVID-19 curbs extended 
    * Malaysia's ruling coalition wins state election; reduces
political uncertainty 
    * South Korea, Taiwan chipmakers rise after U.S tightens
exports
to China's SMIC

    By Nikhil Nainan
    Sept 28 (Reuters) - South Korean and Taiwanese stocks
climbed over 1% each on Monday as investors priced in a boost
for their tech-focussed economies from tighter U.S. curbs on
China's biggest chipmaker, adding to a broadly brighter start
across Asian markets. 
    Data showing profits at Chinese industrial firms grew for a
fourth straight month underpinned stock markets in the region,
although the extension of export curbs on Semiconductor
Manufacturing International Corp left
China's own indices flat after a strong start.

    The dual-listed chipmaker's shares plunged more than 5% in
both Shanghai and Hong Kong.

    Stocks in Seoul climbed 1.2% with local chipmakers
gaining the most, also helped by a fall in the number of daily
COVID-19 infections to its lowest in close to two months. Taiwan
stocks saw a similar rise. 
    "The knee-jerk reflex (to the SMIC decision), apart from
caution, may be for Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese chipmakers to
opportunistically benefit from substitution trades," analysts
from Japanese bank Mizuho said in a note.
    China's recovery has been among the few bright spots for the
global economy as a second wave of coronavirus infections mounts
in Europe, prompting countries to reimpose restrictions and
quashing hopes that the continent was turning a corner. 
    "Broadly I would attribute the lift for Asia markets to the
positive data out of China," said Jingyi Pan, senior market
strategist at retail trading platform IG, adding she expected
factory activity (PMI) survey from China on Wednesday to
reinforce the recovery. 
    Indonesian shares, down 0.6%, were again an
exception as COVID-19 curbs were extended in the capital
Jakarta. 
    Currencies were more of a mixed bag,