Taiwan-based OSAT services providers recently adjusted their production capacities either upward or downward. ASE Technology sold part of its factory operations in China to local private equity company Wise Road Capital, while Foxconn's subsidiary KoreSemi initiated production at its IC packaging and testing plant in Qingdao, China.
To prevent national security being affected by the semiconductor demand/supply imbalance, countries around the world are offering strong incentives to attract major semiconductor companies to set up local wafer fabs. TSMC has been a beneficiary under such environment as it has secured subsidies from the US and Japanese governments. Seeking long-term solutions for the global chip shortage, automakers have begun collaborating with IC designers and foundries or even design their own automotive chips.
With semiconductor becoming a strategic asset and the pressure of electric vehicle (EV) transformation looming, Japan has developed an industry revitalization policy to encourage international and local companies to expand their investment in Japan through subsidies.
In the coming years, the semiconductor industry is expected to see a strong market, and TSMC and other foundries are expanding their facilities and investments. All upstream and downstream industry players - including those in the foundry, packaging material, and fab tool sectors - are all keen on making investments. Taiwan's role in the supply chain is becoming increasingly important.
The shortage of chips is still a headache for Asian technology companies and major carmakers. As the US Department of Commerce's deadline for semiconductor companies to turn over critical information approaches, it remains to be seen whether the department will be able to find a way to ease the bottleneck in semiconductor supply as it claims.
China government has always attached great importance to advances of the semiconductor sector, but semiconductors' vital role to industrial and national development is clear amid the country's trade war with the US. This Digitimes Research Special Report reviews the results of China's efforts to build its semiconductor ecosystem during the 13th 5-year Plan (2015-2020), and looks at the plans set out in its 14th 5-year Plan (2021-2025) to raise China's IC self-sufficiency.
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