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HDW Might be Able to Sell Subs to Taiwan. (17 Sep 2002)

The deputy CEO of HDW, Hannfried Haun has publicly expressed confidence it could close a deal worth an US$6 billion. French and Dutch companies are also reportedly interested in the sale of submarines to Taiwan.

China opposes the deal and has put tremendous diplomatic pressure on Germany and other European countries whose companies have shown interest in the project.

German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder has said he has no intention of allowing the sale of German submarines to Taiwan.

A US investment group has recently taken full control of HDW, and a Taiwanese daily quoted Haun as suggesting that the ownership change could help the shipbuilder pull off the deal despite German export restrictions.

As a US-owned company, HDW would be acting only as a supplier in a deal that is being brokered by the US government.

The US has promised to sell Taiwan eight diesel-electric submarines last year but needs to give the job to a foreign shipyard because US companies no longer build non-nuclear-powered submarines.