According to a senior Japanese lawmaker, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co, the world’s largest contract chip maker, is considering building a second plant in Japan in addition to the $8.6 billion facility currently under construction.
Yoshihiro Seki, secretary general of a ruling party lawmakers’ group on chip industry strategy, also urged Japan’s government to provide a favorable environment for investment, pledging up to 476 billion yen ($3.6 billion) in subsidies for the first TSMC plant.
TSMC is considering additional investments in Japan. We need to create an environment in which they believe they want to work on advanced projects with us “In an interview with Reuters, Seki stated.
In an emailed statement, TSMC stated that it had not ruled out any possibility for Japan, but that there were no concrete plans at this time.
The Taiwanese firm is constructing a chip plant in southern Japan, with Sony Group Corp and Denso Corp taking a minority stake. Production will begin in late 2024.
TSMC is also investing $40 billion in a chipmaking plant in Arizona. The Financial Times reports that it is in advanced talks with suppliers about possibly establishing its first European plant as it diversifies its production base and addresses global demand for semiconductors.
Seki’s group within Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party is advocating for Japan to strengthen its semiconductor industry, which has declined from more than half of the global market by revenue in the late 1980s to less than 10% today.
“In the semiconductor industry, technological innovation is fierce,” Seki said.
“We cannot succeed unless the public and private sectors work together as one.”
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida positioned semiconductors as critical to Japan’s economic security in an October policy speech, promising to channel public and private investment into the industry.