Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry Vice Chairman Woo Tae-hee (left) speaks at a meeting with electronics industry experts, Tuesday. (Yonhap)

SEOUL — South Korea’s electronics industry is gearing up for a surge in demand in the post-coronavirus era, with some experts predicting it as early as the second half of this year, industry sources said Tuesday.

Experts from the semiconductor, display, telecommunications and battery sectors gathered Tuesday at an event hosted by the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry to discuss how to prepare for a post-coronavirus market.

Attendees agreed on the need for preemptive measures to respond to new opportunities after the virus is contained.

The industry experts forecast a new industrial landscape centering on content, services and technologies that allow users to interact without meeting face to face.

Demand for chips and displays will surge at an explosive rate in the second half of the year, according to the experts.

“If the spread of the virus in the US and Europe could slow in the second quarter, there would be no negative impact on the semiconductor industry,” said Song Myung-seob, an analyst at Hi Investment & Securities.

“In the second half of the year, demand for IT devices would skyrocket, leading to a strong recovery of the chip industry.”

Production of liquid crystal displays, mostly in China, should also start recovering in the second quarter, easing the current supply shortage, said Jung Won-seok, another analyst.

Growth in lithium-ion batteries and health care-related home appliances is also expected.

“Amid the COVID-19 shutdown, the market for electric vehicles is continuing to grow, benefiting Korean players to widen the gap with Chinese rivals,” said Kim Ji-san, head of research at Kiwoom Securities.

“Along with health and hygiene-related electronic appliances, the robotics market would gain a growth momentum amid the noncontact trends,” he added.


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