Commerce Seeks Input on Goosing Domestic Chip Production

(Image credit: Intel)

The Commerce Department is looking for input on how to incentivize investment in domestic semiconductor manufacturing.

Commerce points out that semiconductors are must-have tech for everything from securing the communications (5G) supply chain, to AI, to autonomous systems of all types, to quantum computing.

Commerce pointed out that from about 40% of chip fabrication in 1990, the U.S. accounted for only 11% of the global market by 2019.

On the "glass a little more full front," Intel announced last week, and the White House promoted heavily, that it would be building a $20 billion facility outside of Columbus, Ohio, which the President said would mean 10,000 new jobs, including 3,000 full-time. "My administration is going to keep using all of the tools we have to re-shore our supply chains, strengthen our economic resilience, and make more in America."

The President and Commerce are also pushing Congress to pass the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act, which authorizes almost $90 billion for R&D, manufacturing and supply chains.

Also: Telecom, Video Pinched by Global Microchip Shortage

Topics Commerce said it was particularly interested in hearing about from stakeholders:

1. "A semiconductor financial assistance program that would provide funding, through a competitive process, to private entities, consortia of private entities, or public-private consortia to incentivize the establishment, expansion, or modernization of semiconductor manufacturing facilities and supporting infrastructure.
2. "A National Semiconductor Technology Center to serve as a hub of talent, knowledge, investment, equipment and toolsets.
3. "An advanced packaging manufacturing program that focuses on the challenge of embedding fragile computer chips into very small configurations that combine multiple systems resulting in benefits including lower costs, increased functionality and improved energy efficiency.
4. "The current and future workforce development needs of the semiconductor industry." ■

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.