Reuters reports that TSMC — Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, the chip foundry that makes advanced processors for Apple, AMD and Qualcomm — is stepping up its plans to build factories in Arizona and moving away from an advanced factory in Europe.
Last year, TSMC announced it would invest $10-$12 billion to build a new 5nm foundry near Phoenix, Arizona. According to Reuters sources, TSMC officials are considering tripling the company’s investment by building a second $25 billion factory capable of building 3nm chips. More preliminary plans are in the works for 2nm foundries as the Phoenix campus also grows over the next 10-15 years.
US President Joe Biden called for $50 billion to subsidize US chip manufacturing facilities, and the US Senate could take action against the item this week. Strong domestic manufacturing capacity is considered critical as US chip companies such as Nvidia and Qualcomm rely on Asian manufacturing facilities. TSMC would compete with Samsung and Intel to secure these Biden administration subsidies.
Intel and Samsung are also increasing investment in US manufacturing facilities. Intel is building two new plants in Arizona near its existing Chandler facility, and Samsung is building a $17 billion plant in Texas.
The European Union is also seeking domestic chip manufacturing facilities – industry commissioner Thierry Breton has spoken with officials from both Intel and TSMC. The talks seem to have gone better for Intel than for TSMC. Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger proposed a $10 billion deal to build a new European factory, while TSMC officials say that while European opportunities have not been ruled out, they have no plans to build there.
TSMC’s focus on the US rather than Europe may have a lot to do with the company’s market: In the first quarter of 2021, 67 percent of sales were in North America, 17 percent in Asia-Pacific, and just 6 percent. came from Europe and the Middle East. East. Most of TSMC’s European customers are car manufacturers who buy cheaper and less advanced chips.