LG Electronics reported another loss in its Mobile Communications unit, as it attempted to counter the bleak figures by highlighting a sequential improvement following efforts to improve its business structure.

Sales in Q1 declined both year-on-year and sequentially despite the launch of new premium smartphones, which was attributed to sluggish demand in the market as a whole and the global expansion strategies of Chinese rivals.

The Mobile Communications unit reported a loss of KRW203.5 billion ($175 million) during the quarter, up from KRW131.8 billion in Q1 2018 although, more positively, an improvement on the KRW318.5 billion in Q4 2018.

Sales of KRW1.5 trillion were down 29 per cent year-on-year from KRW2.1 trillion and 10 per cent sequentially from KRW1.7 billion.

The company said the future launch of its V50 ThinQ 5G smartphone is expected to create positive momentum, while the relocation of smartphone manufacture from South Korea to Vietnam will also improve profitability as the year rolls on.

Availability of V50 ThinQ 5G has been delayed, as the vendor looks to optimise it to work with the first generation of 5G networks.

But it also noted market demand is expected to remain stagnant and price competition will intensify in Q2.