JAPANESE electronics firm Matsushita hopes to start work in the next 12 months on a £15 million research and development complex in Cardiff.
A spokesman for the firm said the project would go forward, despite the turmoil currently afflicting the Japanese economy.
He said Matsushita, which trades under the Panasonic name, was '... committed to this expansion and the scheme will definitely go ahead'.
Several big-name contractors are understood to have expressed interest in the scheme, which will be built on brownfield land adjoining Matsushita's existing site.
But Japanese contractor Takenaka must be a strong runner, having undertaken UK work for various Japanese clients, including a £13 million electronics parts factory for Matsushita at Port Talbot, South Wales.
Taiwan firm Acer is to build a £500 million electronics factory in the UK. The firm has yet to decide between North-East England or Wales as the location, but Wales is emerging as favourite.