Glass Industry

Asahi Glass May Move Planned New Glass Substrate Plant to Korea

Japan-based Asahi Glass is considering changing the site where it will establish its fifth Taiwan-based glass substrate plant since construction of related facilities may be postponed due to a recent government environment assessment team report which said that the Tree Valley Park industrial park is not suited for development, according to Tetsuji Kakimoto, chairman and president of Asahi Glass Fine Techno Taiwan (AFT), a 100% owned subsidiary of Japan-based Asahi Glass.

The Japan-based company is not ruling out the possibility of moving the new line to Korea, Kakimoto said.

Kakimoto commented that the environment reassessment has brought problems for the company and thus it has decided to reconsider the establishment its new plant in Taiwan. Although he, personally, hopes that Asahi can still build the plant in Taiwan as scheduled, the Japan-based company has not reached a final decision yet.

The Tree Valley Park industrial park, headed by the Chi Mei Group, passed environment assessment in 2004 as the park was originally indented for LCD module (LCM) production. However, due to changes in the industry, the park is now focused on LCD production which needs more water and electricity supply. The government reassessed the environment again recently, sources said.

Asahi currently has four glass substrate plants in Taiwan with three of them already in volume production, said sources. The fourth one is expected to begin mass production in the fourth quarter of 2007, the sources added.

In addition to Taiwan, Asahi also has plants in Japan (six) and Korea (one).

A recent report from the Chinese-language Commercial Times indicated that Asahi Glass has decided to establish its new plant at the Tainan Technology Industrial Park (TTIP) instead of Tree Valley Park industrial park.

Source: DigiTimes