The European Union is urging Taiwan and the country’s semiconductor manufacturers to invest more in semiconductor manufacturing. The aim is specifically to attract a greater share of production to the European continent.
Filip Grzegorzewski, the EU ambassador to Taiwan, says the European Union wants to set up an investment forum later this year to market the continent as an attractive place to invest in, Reuters reports.
“We want to organise another round of the European investment forum in the autumn, with the focus on global supply chains, the focus on digital and the focus on semiconductors”, Grzegorzewski said. “I’m sure it will be a way for us to present opportunities for Taiwan to reach out to Europe and be more present in Europe. We need to now make sure that Taiwan uses its assets well … Taiwan has more than TSMC to offer. There are other excellent semiconductor companies in Taiwan.”
Grzegorzewski believes there should be “more of Taiwan” in Europe and that the business community on the island should keep EU opportunities in mind. These, he says, are also good for Taiwan. Grzegorzewski suggests that it can strengthen Taiwan’s role on the world stage and in global supply chains, especially now that they are changing so rapidly with the Covid-19 pandemic.
Becoming independent of the US and Asia
Europe is desperately seeking an independent position in semiconductor manufacturing. The United States and China are throwing up trade bans back and forth, and the EU is afraid that it too could suffer as a result. That is why the EU is trying to become less dependent on other countries. One aspect in which the continent wants to achieve this is chip production. European car manufacturers such as Volkswagen are currently facing chip shortages and have to wait and see when supply will finally catch up with demand.
At present, however, only a tiny proportion of the top-of-the-range semiconductors are produced within Europe’s borders. The largest precursor, TSMC, does not have any factories on the continent at all. The same goes for Samsung Electronics, the other frontrunner. Intel has a few factories in Ireland, but they are still mainly used for Intel chips. The company wants to change this soon.
There are plans by Intel to build more chip factories in Europe, but they are not very concrete. TSMC recently announced its plans to invest 100 billion dollars in chip production. However, the company only mentioned a factory in the US and a new factory in Taiwan. This still leaves a budget for even more chip factories, and the EU would like to see these built on its continent.