The Japanese government’s export curbs against South Korea have entered their third month, and yet South Korean companies are not being seriously affected. Rather, some of them have succeeded in replacing imports from Japan although their dependence on Japanese fluorine polyimide, photoresist and hydrogen fluoride suppliers is still high.
The export restrictions were implemented all of a sudden and South Korean semiconductor and display manufacturers such as Samsung Electronics, SK Hynix and LG Display managed to respond to the restrictions well. The Japanese government has issued three photoresist export permits, three hydrogen fluoride export permits and one fluorine polyimide export permit since the implementation and it is said that those South Korean companies now have inventory for the rest of this year.
South Korean companies have made great efforts to deal with the restrictions. For example, they slowed down inventory consumption by halving material inputs and tested domestically procured materials after stopping their production lines.
Their efforts are bearing fruit now. Samsung Electronics has used domestically supplied hydrogen fluoride in its semiconductor manufacturing processes for more than one month and SK Hynix has used domestically supplied liquid hydrogen fluoride since the beginning of this month. LG Display has raised its level of hydrogen fluoride import replacement to close to 100 percent, too.