Reuters report Angela Merkel saying that European countries must focus on next-generation chip manufacturing.
Angela Merkel has drawn upon her 15+ years of know-how to say that individual European countries cannot compete in advanced high-tech chip manufacturing.
German Chancellor shared her views with Reuters that the next level of chip development requires an expensive effort. Moving to quantum computing and improved batteries requires a private sector with complete state support.
Angela Merkel is the right person to comment on these technologies. She presented her doctoral thesis on quantum chemistry in 1986. Merkel then entered politics after the reunification of Germany. She further remarked that scientific development was only possible with state stimulus packages like those offered by the US, Korea, and Taiwan.
Angela Merkel elaborated, “The state will have to play a significant role. South Korea and Taiwan go to show that competitive chip production in the 3- or 2-nanometer range, for example, is essentially impossible without state subsidies.”
The current situation of the global economy is negatively affecting supply chains in chip manufacturing. Merkel argued that Europe needs its own manufacturing facilities to ensure independence.
However, she highlighted that German companies failed to capitalize on the solid research base in the country. Merkel was shocked no German company aimed to participate in quantum computing. She argued that Germany led the world in quantum sciences and, therefore, the country should participate in quantum chip manufacturing, resulting in better computers.
She informed that her government had contributed to Germany’s innovation capabilities. She pointed to a project, Gaia-X, as a German effort to create an efficient cloud data infrastructure for European use.
Still, Angela shared, “But in the long term, it cannot be the state that drives new developments.” However, she understands that the decentralized government structure in Germany hinders innovation from the private sector. In addition, the country has many semi-autonomous states with separate ethics councils, creating challenges for innovators.
Merkel still argued that Germany was still a research leader in climate research, physics, chemistry, and robotics. However, she doesn’t have much interest in innovative home appliances. Nevertheless, Merkel shares, “Maybe I’ll develop an interest when I have more time in the near future.”