AU Optronics, one of Taiwan's leading flat screen manufacturers, said yesterday it had joined up with U.S.-based SunPower to build a solar cell plant in Malaysia.
The company's board of directors approved the decision on Thursday to invest US4350 million for a 50 percent stake in the joint venture, it said in a statement.
The plant is expected to start commercial operation in the fourth quarter of 2010 with a maximum output of 1.4 gigawatts, it added.
A company official said Malaysia was chosen for its good investment environment, which has also attracted other international companies such as First Solar.
SunPower is the largest manufacturer of residential and commercial solar systems in the United States and a market leader in Germany, Italy and Spain.
Taiwan has estimated its solar energy industry will be worth up to NT$200 billion (US$6.25 billion) by 2020.