(Nikkei BP Group)
(No.1 High-Tech News Site in Japanese)
| Taiwan's Optoelectronics Industry Sees Bright Future
August 7, 1998 (TAIPEI) -- Taiwan's optoelectronics industry enjoyed
faster growth than the information/electronic sector in recent years.
|The field has also been targeted by many Taiwan companies due to its
Room for growth is still large for the local sector, since optoelectronics
products are still non-mainstream items in the local market.
Statistics from the Photonics Industry and Technology Development Association
show that from 1993 to 1997, the local optoelectronics sector registered
an average growth of 34.79 percent, far exceeding the 12.77 percent
reported by the local information/electronics sector during the same
period of time.
The sector's output, however, remains low, and it was not until 1996
that it broke the NT$100 billion (US$2.9 billion) benchmark. Local optoelectronics
output amounted to NT$164.9 billion last year.
CD-ROM drives, scanners, liquid-crystal display (LCD), light emitting
diodes (LED) and cameras are the top five optoelectronics products in
Facsimile machines, sunglasses, CD-ROMs and other optoelectonics components
are also major products of the local optoelectronics sector.
The major characteristic of the local optoelectronics industry is its
heavy dependence on imported key components.
Taiwan's technology in key components for digital still cameras, charge-coupled
devices (CCD) or motors and optical pick-up heads for DVD players still
lags behind that of the United States and Japan.
Therefore, Taiwan manufacturers' development of new products has been
very much controlled by the attitude and moves of Japanese and U.S.
As a result, Taiwan is not likely to see much room for development in
this area until the U.S. and Japanese heavyweights withdraw from the
markets after profit margins slide.
That is the case, for example, with Taiwan's entry into the markets for
twisted nematic LCDs and super-twisted nematic LCDs.
Therefore, Taiwan still faces the challenge of developing its own key
components if it wants to change the pattern and witness faster growth
in optoelectronics manufacturing.
(Commercial Times, Taiwan)