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UPDATE 1-LG Display to invest $2.6 bln in OLED panel plant in S.Korea

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SEOUL, July 23 (Reuters) - LG Display said on Tuesday that it would invest 3 trillion won ($2.6 billion) in its organic light-emitting diode (OLED) panels production line in South Korea.

The Apple supplier earlier forecast a tough 2019 as it invests heavily in OLED panels at a time of weak demand for smartphones and tech gadgets in general.

The display screen maker said in a statement it would continue to expand its lead in the OLED TV market.

LG Display is shifting its mainstay liquid crystal display (LCD) business toward next-generation OLED panels, as the LCD panel industry is crowded with Chinese rivals.

The South Korean firm is scheduled to report its second-quarter earnings later Tuesday.

($1 = 1,175.7000 won) (Reporting by Ju-min Park, additional reporting by Joyce Lee; editing by G Crosse and Stephen Coates)