Asahi Glass Company (AGC) said it plans to implement structural reform in its European architectural glass business next year.

The Japanese group said the business environment in the entire European region had become much more difficult than its initial assumption made at the beginning of the year.

In its financial report for the first half of 2013 it said demand and prices for architectural glass in the region are expected to be far below the initial projection.

It said: “To turn around its business performance from next year onwards, the company is going to implement structural reform in the architectural glass business in Europe and other businesses, which will result in additional extraordinary losses.”

In the H1 2013 financial report, it said shipments of architectural glass in Japan and Asia remained strong and shipments in North America were on a moderate recovery track.

But shipments in Europe remained sluggish and, price levels fell below the levels of the same period of the previous year. Shipments of glass for solar power systems decreased from the same period of the previous fiscal year as the tough competitive environment continued.

Sales from its flat glass business increased from the year beforemainly due to the impact of the weak yen, although the business environment remained harsh.

Net sales from its glass operations for the six months to June 30, 2013 were JPY320.7 billion ($3.2 billion), up JPY42.5 billion ($43 million) or a 15.3% increase from the previous year.

Operating income decreased by JPY9.6 billion ($97 million) year on year to a loss of JPY10.6 billion ($107.4 million).