Hon Hai Precision, the parent of Taiwanese IT giant Foxconn will pay over $130 million to become the major shareholder in a solar cell company as part of a plan to expand into renewable energy, officials said on Jan. 27.

Hon Hai Precision plans to spend $137.88 million on a 45% stake in debt-ridden Taiwanese firm E-Ton Solar Tech, the two companies said. "The investment is in line with Hon Hai's new development policies targeting green energies," said Arthur Huang.

The investment will turn Hon Hai into E-Ton's single biggest shareholder, according to E-Ton spokesman Lo Lai-huang.

Hon Hai, the world's biggest electronic components maker, is a major supplier to brands such as Apple, Dell and Nokia.

Hon Hai's fresh move came after the island's chip giant Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co announced earlier this month it had teamed up with German firm Centrosolar to produce solar modules.

E-Ton reported a deficit of Tw$2.5 billion in the nine months to September mainly from losses on an investment in Adema Technologies, a U.S.-based maker of components for the solar industry.

Taiwan has estimated its solar energy industry will be worth up to Tw$200 billion (US$6.66 billion) by 2020. The island's parliament has passed a major renewable energy bill aimed at adding between 6,500 and 10,000 megawatts of installed energy from renewable sources over the next 20 years.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2011