LG Display's P10 plant construction has been postponed with no definite plan. The company originally planned to complete the new plant in Paju by the end of this year. However, the plan fell through as it decided to manufacture organic light emitting diode (OLED) panels instead of liquid crystal display (LCD) at the new plant. LG is planning to adjust its investment rate in line with the trend of the growing TV market.
According to the industry on Dec. 27, LG Display completed the exterior of P10 but decided to postpone filing an application with the authorities for authorization of completion. LG Display has announced that it will construct P10, which will be the backbone of OLED production in Korea, by investing nine trillion won (US$8.1 billion) to complete the project in 2018.
The fundamental reason for the delay is the stagnation of the LCD market. Initially, LG Display planned to produce LCD panels at P10 and then switch to OLED production. However, in July, it decided to produce 10.5G OLED panels directly without going through LCD investment. Considering the supply glut in the LCD market due to massive output growth by Chinese companies, there is no reason for LG to increase LCD production.
LG Display needs more time to change the original plan and go straight to 10.5G OLED production. LG Display currently produces 8.5G OLED panels. The 10.5G OLED panel is a new field to LG Display, the world's only OLED panel maker. Therefore, the relevant technology and equipment must be newly prepared.
In addition, LG is preparing to start operation of its Guangzhou plant for production of 8.5G OLED panels. The operation of the Guangzhou plant will start in the second half of next year. For LG Display, there is a considerable difficulty in investing in the P10 plant as well as in the Guangzhou plant. An industry official said, "It is likely that LG Display invests the money it earns from OLED production at the Guangzhou plant in the P10 plant."
An official of LG Display said, "The completed construction part has been approved for use, and the use of remaining part will be approved at the time the whole construction is completed."