Intel has indefinitely delayed plans to develop a $20 billion chip production site in Ohio, pointing to the lack of action by Congress to pass funding the company considers crucial for the project.
The CHIPS for America Act would provide $52 billion in funding for semiconductor manufacturing and was drafted amid national security concerns about America’s dependence on other countries for this crucial industry.
Intel had planned to follow the initial $20 billion investment with a potential of $100 billion over the next decade, but has since lobbied for the subsidies and suggested that without them the size of the project is in doubt.
“Unfortunately, funding for the CHIPS Act has moved slower than expected and we still don’t know when this will happen,” the company said in a statement.
Lawmakers are also concerned that without the funding, Intel could focus more on its expansion in Europe, with sources suggesting the company is looking to prioritize projects with the best chance of receiving grant support, according to the the wall street journal.
In March, Intel announced a €33 billion investment in European manufacturing and R&D, with an initial investment of €17 billion in a semiconductor factory in Germany. In total, the company has indicated that it could invest 80 billion euros in Europe over the next decade.
Those plans are to receive backing from the European Union’s own €43 billion chip law, with €2.7 billion already allocated to support Intel’s German factory in 2022 alone.
Just a few months ago, Morris Chang, the founder of rival chipmaker TSMC, publicly dismissed the Ohio factory as “an exercise in futility”, warning that the CHIPS Act did not provide enough funding to establish the type of production that Intel is looking for.
The announcement is a blow not only to Ohio’s economy, which was looking forward to 3,000 permanent jobs and opportunities for construction companies, but also to the plans of the Biden administration, which announced the expansion of semiconductor production as the key to the American international. reputation.
In this year’s State of the Union address, President Biden specifically mentioned the project, calling the potential site “‘Field of Dreams,’ the ground upon which America’s future will be built.” . It is now clear that until bipartisan funding can be provided, this plan will remain on hold.
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