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June South Korea's OLED panel exports surged 129.2%

June South Korea's OLED panel exports surged 129.2%

According to Korean media reports, South Korea’s exports of OLED TV panels to Japan more than doubled in June, setting a record high. Industry experts speculate that Japanese TV manufacturers are trying to secure their expected numbers before Japan restricts exports to South Korea.

The Information and Communication Technology Planning and Evaluation Institute (IITP) said on July 24 that South Korea’s exports of OLED panels to Japan reached US$13.2 million in June, an increase of 129.2% over the same period last year, reaching a monthly high. Therefore, although South Korea’s exports of LCD panels to Japan fell by 28.9% in June, the total panel exports to Japan reached the highest level ever, reaching $30.2 million.

However, South Korea’s panel exports to China, Vietnam and Mexico fell by 28.0%, 10.2% and 78.0% respectively in June.

OLED panels exported from South Korea to Japan began to surge in May. In that month, South Korea’s exports to Japan totaled $12.7 million, surpassing the $10 million mark for the first time. Some experts speculate that the Japanese government may provide Japanese TV manufacturers with some tips on export restrictions.

High-purity hydrogen fluoride (etching gas) is one of Japan's export control products, which seriously affects OLED panel production. “LG Display specializes in producing OLED panels for TV, which means that Japanese OLED TV companies have no choice but to rely on South Korea,” an industry source said. "This is also because some experts say that Japan's export restrictions may be one of the reasons for the unconscious suicide in the Japanese OLED TV market."

At the same time, global display panel exports totaled US$1.59 billion in June, down 26.6% from the same period last year. This is the biggest drop since three months and two months since April 2016. As of June, LCD panel exports fell sharply by 43.3%, while OLED panel exports shrank by 12.5%.