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Taiwan: Stocks down ahead of Friday's inauguration of new president

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[TAIPEI] Taiwan stocks fell on Thursday, ahead of the inauguration of the island's new president, on uncertainty over how she would deal with China, Taiwan's largest trading partner, and also tracking weak regional bourses.

Tsai Ing-wen, whose independence-leaning Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) party won a landslide victory in January, will make her inaugural speech on Friday.

The speech will be widely watched by investors who fear that if Beijing is not satisfied with her words, the island's economic ties with China would sour further.

As of 0333 GMT, the main TAIEX index was down 0.6 per cent at 8,107.90, after closing up 0.2 per cent in the previous session.

The electronics subindex sank 0.4 per cent, while the financials subindex lost 0.5 per cent.

China sees Taiwan as a breakaway province to be taken back by force if necessary and has been pressuring the new government to stick to its view that the island is part of China.

Taiwan will also issue its April export orders data on Friday, which are on track to slide for the 13 straight month.

The Taiwan dollar softened TW$0.088 to TW$32.793 per US dollar.

REUTERS