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Sees 'no end to market slump'

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Fujitsu is shutting its Dublin chip assembly plant in November and scrapping 338 workers. It says it sees no end to the semi-conductor market slump.

The plant, Shinko Microelectronics Ireland, is 49 per cent owned by Fujitsu and 51 per cent owned by Shinko Electric. Fujitsu owns 50 per cent of Shinko Electric.

Shinko Electric took the majority stake in the Dublin plant on November 1998 to move the business away from DRAM production, already in oversupply, to making logic devices and flash memory.

Shinko Electric said it tried to sell the plant but could find not takers. It was particularly hit by "weakening demand for flash memories and SAW filters used in mobile phones, and slack orders for assembly of those chips. The plant's logic IC subcontracting business has also been greatly affected by price declines and difficulties in securing additional business in the European semiconductor market. There is no foreseeable end to the market slump. "

Fujitsu reported Q1 losses four times greater than a year earlier because of chip prices. It has also announced it will cut 16,400 workers out of its 187,000 workforce by March 2002 and focus on software and services. ®

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