Economics minister urges banks to support Chimei


TAIPEI — Minister of Economic Affairs Shih Yen-shiang yesterday urged banks to lend financial support to Chimei Innolux Corp., one of Taiwan’s leading flat panel makers, which is seeking a NT$60 billion (US$2 billion) syndicated loan to take on its current financial difficulties.

Shih said that the flat screen sector remains critical to Taiwan’s industrial development as the business commands a broad supply chain.

Shih made the comments after the local media reported earlier in the day that banks have been reluctant to extend loans to unprofitable Chimei Innolux and its syndicated loan plan could fall apart.

The official said that to his knowledge negotiations between Chimei Innolux and the banks were still under way. Amid weakening global demand, Chimei Innolux and its rivals, such as AU Optronics Corp., witnessed flat panel prices falling and suffered massive losses.