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Mon, Oct 20, 2003 - Page 12 News List

World Business Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ Electronics
Sony to stop making CRTs

Sony Corp plans to discontinue producing television picture tubes in Japan as early as next year, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported, without saying where it obtained the information. Sony, the world's largest maker of television sets, will shift production of cathode ray tubes (CRTs) to the US and China, the report said. Sony will then import them, while increasing production of flat-panel televisions domestically, the paper said. The company currently produces CRTs in Gifu and Aichi prefectures, and doesn't plan to close factories or fire workers when it shifts production overseas, the paper said. Sony produced about 10 million television tubes and 160,000 flat-panel televisions in the fiscal year ended in March, the paper said.

■ Automobiles

China makes BMWs

The first Chinese-made BMW cars went on sale this weekend, the official Xinhua News Agency reported, in another sign of the country's growing manufacturing sophistication and surging demand for luxury goods. The BMW 325Is, manufactured at the company's joint-venture plant in the northeastern city of Shenyang, are priced at 473,850 yuan (US$57,786), about 200,000 yuan (US$24,390) less than the imported version, Xinhua said in a report late Saturday. While that's an astronomical sum for most Chinese, who earn about US$700 annually on average, it is within the reach of many in the growing ranks of state company managers, entrepreneurs, entertainers and others who have benefited from economic reforms enacted over the past two decades.

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