The world’s largest chip manufacturer TSMC is considering building a new chip factory in Germany. With this, in full Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, the Taiwanese group could help solve the global chip shortage.
“As far as Germany is concerned, we are making a serious assessment, but it is at a very early stage,” chairman Mark Liu said in a meeting with shareholders. The possibility of a new factory in Japan is also being considered.
TSMC is also in the process of setting up a large factory in the US state of Arizona. Reports about possible additional investments there previously led to speculation that there would probably be no significant European chip factory for the time being from the vital supplier of, for example, Apple and car manufacturers such as the German Volkswagen and Daimler.
For the latter two, a nearby TSMC factory would be very welcome. And for TSMC, expansion in Germany is also interesting because rival GlobalFoundries already has a factory in Germany and would be lurking to take over customers. In addition, the American Intel has already shown interest in a possible move to Germany.
In the automotive world, problems with chip deliveries caused significant delays and temporarily shut down factories. Experts have indicated that the chip shortage could continue well into 2022.
The chip shortage has arisen because there is much more demand during the pandemic for laptops, computers and mobile phones for people who work from home. At the same time, people are also looking for entertainment, which means that game consoles, for example, are in great demand.
The auto industry, in turn, scaled-down production and reduced its chip orders at the time of the first corona dip. However, when the market picked up again, chip manufacturers had received so many other orders that long lead times had arisen for the chips from the car manufacturers.