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LG.Philips to Invest in China Plant
Jun 29, 2006
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South Korea's LG.Philips LCD Co. Ltd. will invest nearly U.S. $100 million on a new south China complex, in a bid to serve the affluent Pearl Delta region, a local official said.

The world's second largest maker of thin-film transistor liquid crystal displays (TFT-LCD), the central component in flat-panel PC monitors and LCD televisions, last week announced the project in the south China of Guangzhou. But it did not provide any details.

According to Reuters, the company has already signed a letter of intent to build a complex focusing on module production, the last part of the TFT-LCD production process, in a development zone in the city of Guangzhou, said a zone official.

Most of the world's major TFT-LCD makers, including South Korea's Samsung Electronics and Taiwan's AU Optronics, have similar so-called "back-end" plants in China that focus on less sophisticated finishing work.

But only a handful of companies--most with strong backing from local Chinese government bodies--have set up more sophisticated facilities making the actual TFT-LCD panels.

According to the China environmental protection bureau's southern regional office, LG.Philips will be the sole owner of the Guangzhou complex, investing $95 million. The complex will consist of two factories.

One will make TFT-LCD modules, mostly 32-inch and 47-inch, with annual capacity of 5.76 million modules. The other will make cells plus modules for smaller 2-inch and 7-inch TFT-LCDs, typically used in cellphones and other portable devices. That line will have an annual capacity of 46.8 million units.

Guangzhou will be LG.Philips' second TFT-LCD module production complex in China, behind its existing one in the central city of Nanjing.

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