Asahi Plans To Close Philippine Auto Glass Line

Asahi Glass Philippines, the local unit of Japanese glass maker Asahi Glass Co. Ltd. (J.AHG or 5201) said Thursday it will phase out its Philippines automotive glass operations this year, but may recall that decision if domestic car sales improve.

The company said the timing of the closure of the production line would depend on deadlines set in outstanding contracts with local car assemblers.

The planned closure of the automotive glass production line will improve profitability, Asahi said.

"Without the burden of unprofitable operations in some product lines, the company can concentrate on its core business in basic flat glass manufacturing and distribution," the company said.

The company is investing an additional 1.86 billion pesos ($1=PHP53.95) to improve its flat glass operations.

Asahi Glass plans to supply Philippine car manufacturers with glass imported from its plants in Thailand and Indonesia.

With bigger car markets in Indonesia and Thailand than in the Philippines, Asahi Glass said it will be more cost effective for the company to produce automotive glass there and export the product to Manila.

The car industry in Thailand sells around 500,000 units a year, while Indonesia sells around 350,000 cars. Sales of vehicles in the Philippines is around 85,000.

600450 Asahi Plans To Close Philippine Auto Glass Line glassonweb.com
Date: 17 February 2003
Source: Yahoo

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