US Hosts Initial ‘Chip 4’ Meeting In Taiwan

ASML's TWINSCAN NXE:3400B semiconductor lithography tool. ASML chip

US hosts initial ‘Chips 4’ working group meeting in Taiwan with participation of South Korea and Japan as it seeks to block China’s chip progress

The US has hosted a preliminary meeting of a working group on semiconductor supply chain reslilience and cooperation in Taiwan, as it seeks to gain more control over chip supplies while limiting the advances of mainland China in the industry.

Taiwan Economy Minister Wang Mei-hua told reporters in Taipei that views were exchanged at an initial meeting.

“We… hope everyone can discuss how to collaborate in the future on supply chain problems like the ones we recently encountered,” Wang said, according to Reuters.

chip, semiconductor, chipsCollaboration

Representatives of Japan and South Korea also attended the meeting of the “US East Asian Semiconductor Supply Chain Resiliency Working Group” at the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), the de facto US embassy on the island.

South Korea’s foreign ministry said the country’s top representative in Taiwan attended the meeting.

Last month Taiwanese semiconductor industry veteran Charles Kau described the so-called Chip 4 pact as being intended to deny mainland China access to advanced chip technologies and equipment, and warned the countries participating could face significant reprisals from mainland China.

South Korean companies such as Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix have invested heavily in facilities on the Chinese mainland, while Taiwan’s Foxconn, which assembles the iPhone and iPad for Apple, is the mainland’s single largest private employer.

Chips Act

The US in August passed the Chips Act providing some $52 billion (£47bn) of subsidies to persuade chip companies to build advanced facilities in the country.

Firms that receive the subsidies are prohibited from expanding production of advanced chips in mainland China, one of a range of measures the US is employing to try to block China’s advancement in the semiconductor field.

“They’re not allowed to use this money to invest in China, they can’t develop leading-edge technologies in China, they can’t send the latest technology overseas,” US commerce secretary Gina Raimondo said at a briefing earlier this month.