GlobalWafers of Taiwan announces plans to build a $5 billion plant in Sherman, Texas, to manufacture silicon wafers for Intel. Photo courtesy of sas-globalwafers.com.
June 27 (UPI) -- Taiwan-based technology company GlobalWafers promises to ease a chip shortage in the United States with plans to build a $5 billion factory in Sherman, Texas.
GlobalWafers announced Monday it will manufacture silicon wafers for Intel and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. as part of a U.S. effort to increase domestic production of advanced semiconductors and reduce reliance on imports.
"Today's announcement from GlobalWafers is critical to rebuilding the domestic semiconductor supply chain, strengthening our economic and national security and creating U.S. manufacturing jobs," said. U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo.
Currently, domestic production of silicon wafers is expected to meet only 20% of U.S. demand by 2025, according to GlobalWafers, with the chip shortage disrupting production on a wide range of products, including automobiles.
"With the global chips shortage and ongoing geopolitical concerns, GlobalWafers is taking this opportunity to address the United States semiconductor supply chain resiliency issue by building an advanced node, state-of-the-art, 300 millimeter silicon wafer factory," said Doris Hsu, GlobalWafers chairman and CEO. "Instead of importing wafers from Asia, GlobalWafers will produce and supply wafers locally."
GlobalWafers' 3.2 million square-foot silicon wafer factory will be the largest of its kind in the U.S. and among the largest in the world. Construction is expected to start later this year with the plant creating 1,500 new jobs when it starts production in 2025.
GlobalWafers' $5 billion investment could receive U.S. government support if Congress passes the so-called Chips Act. The legislation includes $52 billion in funding for domestic semiconductor production, in addition to research and development.
"If Congress doesn't pass the Chips Act in the next few weeks, then the United States will be a big loser because these companies will go to other countries," Raimondo told The Wall Street Journal.
"With the proper level of federal incentives, I can envision the city of Sherman developing into the complete semiconductor ecosystem to fully support the growing U.S. semiconductor industry," Sherman-based GlobalWafers President Mark England said.
"This announcement is another critical step in addressing the U.S. and global chips supply issue."