The de facto US ambassador to Taiwan said on Thursday that the United States and Taiwan are normal partners when it comes to semiconductors and that strengthening this cooperation is a priority for the United States, according to Reuters.
Washington increasingly viewed technological power and democratically governed Taiwan as a core part of its strategy to shift global supply chains away from China, especially when it comes to technology and chip companies.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of a new chip manufacturing plant for Powerchip Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp in central Taiwan, Brent Christensen, director of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), said he was there “to reassert the US government’s focus on supply chain security.”
“President Biden and President Tsai have rightly identified the semiconductor industry as a major strategic priority, not only for economic innovation, but also for national security,” he added.
Taiwan’s central role in chip production has emerged in the spotlight during the COVID-19 pandemic, with increasing demand for laptops, tablets and other equipment to support the home-from-home trend for companies such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (TSMC), the world’s largest chip maker.
Foreign governments and companies have also appealed to Taiwan to help solve the auto chip shortages that have disrupted factories around the world.
US companies have also not been standing idly by, and this week Intel announced a $ 20 billion plan to expand its capacity to manufacture advanced chips.