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Sharp Australia is not saying whether a decision by the company in Japan to shut their TV display production plant will affect supplies into Australia.At the weekend Toshiba, Hitachi, and Panasonic said they would shutter their liquid crystal display plants for a month following the 9.0 magnitude earthquake and resulting tsunami that struck the country on March 11.

Now, with new aftershocks and pending supply problems, Sharp, who are Japan’s largest exporter of LCD TVs, has suspended production at its two biggest factories, due to a shortage of a gas used in the manufacturing process.

The plants, which have a combined capacity of 172,000 display panels per month, won’t reopen until May 6, at the earliest.

The company  claims it has enough TVs in its inventory to last about a month.

Big losses are tipped for all of the TV Japanese TV manufacturers with the exception of those that are already manufacturing in China and Taiwan.

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