Sony Corp. said Tuesday it will stop manufacturing audio equipment at its Indonesian subsidiary by next March in line with efforts to restructure its plant operations in Southeast Asia.

All 1,000 workers at P.T. Sony Electronics Indonesia will be fired and the product line will be transferred to Sony’s Malaysian plant and elsewhere, it said.

The Indonesian plant has manufactured audio equipment, including minicomponent stereo systems, since March 1992 that has been sold in the United States and Europe. Annual sales run to 15 billion yen.

At the end of fiscal 2001, Sony trimmed its overseas electronics-related plant operations to 54 from 70 in 1998.

Ericsson to raise capital

LONDON (Kyodo) Telecom equipment maker Telefon AB L.M. Ericsson of Sweden plans to raise capital in its loss-making cell phone joint venture with Sony Corp. in early 2003, an Ericsson executive told an investors’ meeting in New York on Monday.

The joint venture Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB posted a 1 billion kronor (about 13.4 billion yen) loss in the July-September quarter.

A senior Ericsson executive had said that Ericsson would discontinue financing the venture, capitalized at $500 million, unless the business turns profitable.

The equal-parts joint venture, established last fall, is not expected to turn a profit until after 2003, owing to sluggish sales of mobile-phone equipment, a Sony executive said in October.

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