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Samsung, Philips to Invest More Heavily in LCD Plants

Samsung (opens in new tab) plans to invest an additional $1.7 billion in its second so-called seventh-generation (7G) LCD plant, due to the growing worldwide demand for LCD screens. The 7G plant is located in Tangjeong, South Korea.

According to published reports, Samsung has already invested about $2.3 billion in the first phase of its 7G line earlier this year, bringing its current total commitment to $4 billion. Samsung reportedly completed the initial phase of its expansion project and began installing production equipment last month. The second assembly line is on track to begin operation by next April.

Samsung is assembling dual LCD lines as part of a joint venture with Sony. The 7G method processes glass substrates up to 1,870MM x 2,200MM. The first assembly line has the capacity to process 60,000 substrates a month, with the new second line eventually producing possibly up to 90,000 substrates monthly. If all goes according to plan, this would give Samsung (and Sony) a combined production capacity of 150,000 glass substrates per month, or about 1.8 million LCDs a year.

In a related development, Samsung competitor L.G. Philips LCD reported this week it would invest $535 million to build a back-end LCD assembly plant in Wroclaw, Poland, to help increase its European presence. The Philips plant is expected to begin operation in the 1Q of 2007.