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JAPAN NEWS: Pioneer and Panasonic 'confirm plasma tie-up'

The much-rumoured tie-up between Pioneer and Panasonic to manufacture plasma display panels for forthcoming Pioneer Kuro TVs has been confirmed at a press conference in Japan, the Nikkei Business Daily has reported.

Under the deal, Pioneer's plasma display panel (PDP) engineering team will be taken on by Panasonic, thus speeding up development.

The report says that the two companies have reached a basic agreement on a comprehensive business partnership covering plasma panels, with a full announcement to be made next month.

It's thought Panasonic will take on Pioneer's plasma panel engineering staff, numbering almost 200, to enable it to accelerate display development while allowing Pioneer to reduce costs. The first Pioneer screens using panels made under the agreement will be launched next year.