Taiwan’s TSMC, the world’s largest semiconductor company, has announced for the first time that it plans to build a new factory in Japan. TSMC is expected to actively seek investment from the Japanese government eager to revive the semiconductor industry.
According to the Nihon Keizai Shimbun on the 15th, TSMC CEO Wei Jer-ja hinted at a new Japanese factory during the company’s fourth-quarter earnings call by video on the same day. “We are currently considering the possibility of building the first new plant in Japan,” he said. “We will make a final decision based on customer demand in the future,” he added. “The global semiconductor chip supply shortage will continue through the end of the year and is expected to have an impact next year.”
TSMC has been rumored to enter Japan before. Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported last month that TSMC was considering building a large-scale semiconductor plant in Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan.
Japan produced more than 50 percent of the world’s semiconductors in the 1980s alone, but now lags far behind in high-tech semiconductor production. As the global semiconductor shortage has recently worsened, the Japanese government has made efforts to attract semiconductor companies. In May, the Japanese government announced that if TSMC builds a semiconductor R&D complex in Ibaraki, Japan, it will provide subsidies worth about 200 billion won.
Meanwhile, TSMC announced the same day that its net profit for the second quarter rose about 11% to 134.4 billion Taiwan dollars from 120.8 billion Taiwan dollars a year earlier.
In a quarter, sales also increased by 20 percent to 372.1 billion Taiwan dollars, a record. “This year, the global semiconductor market (excluding memory) will grow by 17%,” Wei Zhuja said. “TSMC’s sales this year will also grow by more than 20%.”