China May Raise Import Tariffs on LCDs


China may raise its tariffs on LCD panel imports as it moves to protect the country’s fledgling panel industry, people familiar with the situation have said.

China’s BOE Technology Group (BOE) and China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSPT), are expected to begin pilot runs at their new 8.5G LCD panel plants in August 2011. BOE’s and CSPT’s plants are set to enter mass production in September and October, respectively.

If China raises import tariffs on LCD panels, it will force LCD manufacturers to locate their fabrication plants within China. South Korea’s LG Display and Samsung, as well as Taiwan’s AU Optronics are moving in that direction. Others will be forced to join.

China’s potential market for LCD goods is enormous, but so is the potential for intensified intellectual property espionage.

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