PCB Production Up, Shows METI

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TOKYO The Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI) of Japan released PCB production data for the country's first half of 2006, indicating growth in all areas except flex circuit boards.

METI's data shows a 15.6% increase in Japanese production for the first six months of 2006, with overall production totaling 455,387 yen. Rigid board production grew about 18% in the first half, while flex circuit boards experienced a 1.1% decline. Flex circuits are expected to end 2006 in a positive growth trend, according to Dominique Numakura, analyst with DKN Research. Module circuit production increased greatly for rigid circuits, but saw little improvement in other sectors creating about 20% growth overall.

The METI also released year-to-year data (June 2005 June 2006) that indicates 17.1% growth in production. Rigid board production increased about 17% as well, though single-side circuits grew slowly compared to more active markets, such as high-layer-count boards and build-up boards. Numakura suggests that single-side circuits do not offer high enough profit margins to be a lucrative production sector in Japan. Flex circuit production increased to 12,218 yen in June 2006, representing a 9.7% increase from the previous year.



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