Taiwan's photonics industry posted huge revenue growth in 2004

Jan 19, 2005 Ι Industry In-Focus Ι Electronics and Computers Ι By Ken LPM, CENS
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Taipei, Jan. 19, 2005 (CENS)--Taiwan's photonics industry saw revenue increase 36%, to NT$919.9 billion (US$28.7 billion at US$1:NT$32) last year, from 2003's NT$675.5 billion (US$21.1 billion), and will likely surge past the NT$1 trillion (US$31.2 billion) mark this year, according to a research organization.

The government-backed market research organization Photonics Industry & Technology Development Association (PIDA) released the data yesterday in Taipei.

The 2004 value, the association's research fellows said, accounted for around 13% of the world's total revenue, which amounted to US$2 trillion, and was two percentage points higher than the previous year's value.

The 2004 growth of the Taiwan industry was most driven up by its optoelectronics and flat-panel display (FPD) segments, with the former (US$1.5 billion) surging 39% and the latter (US$16 billion) soaring 61% from 2003 levels.

PIDA research fellows pointed out that the hefty growth of the island's FPD segment was a consequence of the manufacturers' bold investments in thin-film transistor liquid-crystal display (TFT-LCD) productions in recent years.

FPD segment constituted 60% of 2004 revenue of Taiwan's photonics industry, making the largest industry sector of the Taiwan industry, the PIDA's research showed. Optical-storage segment was the second-largest industry sector of the Taiwan industry last year, accounting for 20%-some with a revenue totaling US$6.3 billion.

The PIDA research showed that the 2004 revenue of the Taiwan industry was unevenly contributed by the products, with the top 10 products totally accounting for 87% with a combined value of NT$806 billion (US$25.18 billion). According to the organization, Taiwan's photonics industry supplies 30 to 40 products.

The top 10 products were TFT-LCD, CD-R disc, twisted-nematic/super twisted nematic (TN/STN) LCDs, digital still camera, DVD-R disc, light-emitting diode packaging service, rewritable DVD drive, combo-type optical-disc drive, rewritable CD drive and optoelectronics components. For the first time, CD-ROM drive, DVD-ROM drive and image scanner dropped out of the top-10 list.

The PIDA research showed that Taiwan was the world's No. 3 supplier of photonics products including STN/TFT-LCDs, LED packaging service, digital cameras, optical discs and the drives as well as organic LEDs.
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