TSMC Expands Its Presence In the US: World’s Leading Semiconductor Foundry to Build Fab In Arizona

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Image: TSMC

Earlier this week, The Wall Street Journal published a story about the White House attempting to woo TSMC into setting up chip factories in the United States. Those talks evidently went well, as a new report claims that the world’s leading semiconductor foundry has already agreed to set up shop in Arizona.

According to “people familiar with the matter,” TSMC should be making an official announcement as early as tomorrow (Friday, 5/15). Those sources also claimed that the factory will be pumping out 5 nm chips “by the end of 2023 at the earliest.”

“TSMC’s new plant would make chips branded as having 5-nanometer transistors, the tiniest, fastest and most power-efficient ones manufactured today, according to a person familiar with the plans,” wrote the WSJ. “TSMC just started rolling out 5-nanometer chips for customers to test at a factory in Taiwan in recent months.”

Naturally, the point of this is to reduce dependency on Asia for chips and other crucial technology. Chandler, Arizona is already home to three Intel fabs: Fab 12, Fab 22, and Fab 32. A fourth – Fab 42 – is under construction for the manufacture of both 10 nm and 7 nm chips.

Update: TSMC has released the following statement, confirming its intention to “build and operate an advanced semiconductor fab in the United States.”

TSMC (TWSE: 2330, NYSE: TSM) today announced its intention to build and operate an advanced semiconductor fab in the United States with the mutual understanding and commitment to support from the U.S. federal government and the State of Arizona.

This facility, which will be built in Arizona, will utilize TSMC’s 5-nanometer technology for semiconductor wafer fabrication, have a 20,000 semiconductor wafer per month capacity, create over 1,600 high-tech professional jobs directly, and thousands of indirect jobs in the semiconductor ecosystem. Construction is planned to start in 2021 with production targeted to begin in 2024. TSMC’s total spending on this project, including capital expenditure, will be approximately US$12 billion from 2021 to 2029. This U.S. facility not only enables us to better support our customers and partners, it also gives us more opportunities to attract global talents. This project is of critical, strategic importance to a vibrant and competitive U.S. semiconductor ecosystem that enables leading U.S. companies to fabricate their cutting-edge semiconductor products within the United States and benefit from the proximity of a world-class semiconductor foundry and ecosystem.

TSMC welcomes continued strong partnership with the U.S. administration and the State of Arizona on this project. This project will require significant capital and technology investments from TSMC. The strong investment climate in the United States, and its talented workforce make this and future investments in the U.S. attractive to TSMC. U.S. adoption of forward-looking investment policies to enable a globally competitive environment for a leading edge semiconductor technology operation in the U.S. will be crucial to the success of this project. It will also give us the confidence this and other future investments by TSMC and its supply chain companies will be successful.

In the United States, TSMC currently operates a fab in Camas, Washington and design centers in both Austin, Texas and San Jose, California. The Arizona facility would be TSMC’s second manufacturing site in the United States.

Tsing Mui
News poster at The FPS Review.

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