In view of the shortage affecting many industries today, the manufacture of semiconductors in Europe in Brussels has become a priority for discussion in the upper echelons of the European Union. While the crisis is particularly affecting European car factories, it turns out that Europe is dependent on China for this issue of semiconductors, which are indispensable in modern industry. To end this dependency as soon as possible, the EU would plan to double its semiconductor production by 2030. An ambitious goal but it may not be enough to solve the problem if a crisis similar to the current shortage arises.
Reuters news agency said Europe would try to unite the forces of the various semiconductor companies that are already present on the old continent. The EU is planning an IPCEI, an investment plan that will make it easier for member states to invest public money in this booming industry. If Europe wants to become (again) a strong industrial player in the semiconductor world and reach 20% of world production by 2030, it must certainly build a new foundry on the continent.
Seduce or create a giant in the industry?
Thierry Breton, the French commissioner in charge of the European single market, should indeed start talks with several leading companies in the manufacture of semiconductors (Intel, TSMC) in order to convince them to settle in the old continent. According to Reuters, however, the European offer would have found little resonance with both Uncle Sam and the Taiwanese company’s offices.
In the absence of an interesting investment offer from a major player in the industry, several representatives from the European Commission have mentioned the idea of ”creating” a giant of European semiconductors through well-developed companies already in the field.
Today, the largest foundry in Europe is owned by the American company GlobalFoundries, which manufactures 28 nm chips that are used in many consumer goods industries. In view of this, the Asians TSMC and Samsung are already producing 5 nm chips and preparing to switch to 4 nm technologies or even more or less long-term to 2 nm technologies.
A shortage that is likely to continue
Apart from the lack of a European factory, the old container also has a long way to go in terms of research and development. The investments therefore have to be a bit larger in order to have the chance of starting a credible company in the field of semiconductors.
On this subject, Thierry Breton should present an update of the European industrial strategy at the end of this week. The opportunity to take stock of the options chosen by Europe in relation to semiconductors.
Semiconductors are essential components of the industry today, which can be found in cars, telephones, washing machines, but also in game consoles. Jean-Noël Vieille, chief economist at HPC, estimates that the market will not improve before 2022. For Mathilde Aubry, economist and teacher at EM Normandie, “it is very rare to find companies that are able to manufacture and design the products.” Crisps “.
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