Expect the price of large screen LCD and plasma TVs to plunge over the next few years, as the biggest names in glass embark on a full-blown panel production war. Sony is extending its partnership with Samsung and this week announced that it’s building a new LCD panel production facility in South Korea. The two companies, who formed the joint venture S-LCD Corporation back in 2004, claim that cutting edge production techniques will improve efficiency, and drive down the cost of flatscreens to consumers. The new plant will be able to make 15 32-inch LCD panels from a single eighth-generation mother glass panel, when it moves into full production early 2007. The aim is to ramp up production to 7.2 million 40-inch panels annually. S-LCD hope to out-produce rivals Sharp (once the world’s biggest producer of LCD panels) and Matsushita Electric Industrial Co (aka Panasonic). But Sony’s Japanese rivals are not taking the announcement lying down. Sharp says it will quadruple its production to 20 million 32-inch LCD panels annually by 2009, while Matsushita has countered with a pledge to increase its plasma TV output; it aims to construct a plant in Amagasaki, Japan, capable of churning out 11.5 million 42-inch plasma panels by 2008.