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ITI Presents The European Chips Act: How to Increase Resilience of Semiconductor Supply Chains

Speakers

  • Lucilla Sioli, Director for Artificial Intelligence and Digital Industry, DG Connect, European Commission

  • Wouter Baljon, EU Government Affairs Lead, ASML

  • Christin Eisenschmid, Vice President for Worldwide Government Affairs, Intel

  • Eva Maydell, Member of the European Parliament, EPP

  • Jason Oxman, President and CEO, ITI

In case you missed it, you can find a recap of the event below or watch the event here.

On March 11, ITI brought together global policy makers and industry experts to discuss perspectives on how the EU Chips Act can best deliver on its objectives to increase the EU’s share of the global semiconductor market and secure the supply chain. The event featured distinguished panelists from the policy sphere and the semiconductor sector, includingLucilla Sioli, Woulter Baljon, Christin Eisenschmid, and Eva Maydell, with ITI President and CEO Jason Oxman.

Jason Oxman kicked off the debate by stressing the importance of semiconductors as enablers of the digital space and the green and digital transition. ITI supports the EU Chips Act, he said, for its numerous benefits including the potential to drive innovation across nearly all sectors of the EU economy. The current situation in Ukraine highlights the importance of securing resources such as energy supply, which are key to the semiconductor industry, he continued, noting that it would be important to observe how the availabilities of these resources may influence the new legislative initiative’s success. Jason went on to stress that the EU Chips Act’s incentives must target all stages of the semiconductor supply chain and all types of chips regardless of their size, and that ambitions for EU supply chain resilience should be coupled with global cooperation with international partners to ensure stability of an inherently global supply chain.

“Today’s discussion will address the fundamental question of resilience of semiconductor supply chains, and how EU public policies can help support that objective.” – Jason Oxman, President and CEO, ITI

Lucilla Sioli began the discussion by stating that the Chips Act was a unique opportunity for Europe to strengthen its capacities in the semiconductor field, listing investments, research outputs, and value chain monitoring as key elements of the legislation’s success. Christin Eisenschmid welcomed the Chips Act for its comprehensive, holistic, and long-term view of the semiconductor industry and stressed the importance for policymakers to target and mobilize hotspots, gaps, and key players along chip value chains, a sentiment echoed by Wouter Baljon. Eva Maydell praised the Chips Act as an example of the EU’s ability to work in a united and powerful way. She also stressed the need to create an environment where investments, ambition, and innovation were prioritized with long-term resilience and foresight as a general rule. Wouter Baljon and other panelists also underlined the international dimension of the chips industry and the importance of Europe’s strategic decision making in its semiconductor ambitions.

“The Chips Act highlights a need for production innovation and better visibility of the strengths and weaknesses of Europe. We have very much seen key markets in Europe that have an interesting mix of chips that are advanced and needed here. There is a market in Europe for chips.” – Wouter Baljon, EU Government Affairs Lead, ASML

When asked about public and private sector collaboration in protecting the semiconductor supply chain from future crises, Eva Maydell noted that cooperation was essential. All actors also stressed the importance of working with likeminded global allies to build international, resilient supply chain networks. Eva Maydell, Wouter Baljon, and Christin Eisenschmid also highlighted the need to secure and strengthen talent pipelines within the EU to ensure innovation and economic growth.

“Intel welcomes the EU Chips Act that we believe focuses on the right goals and actions to significantly strengthen the EU semiconductor ecosystem, including support for first-of-a-kind manufacturing facilities that will improve supply chain resilience in Europe.” - Christin Eisenschmid, Vice President for Worldwide Government Affairs, Intel

When Jason Oxman asked her how she thought the Parliament would move forward with the Chips Act, Eva Maydell expressed her hopes that her fellow MEPs would steer away from “over-prescriptive” regulation, reiterating the need for the Chips Act to be able to adapt to everchanging political and economic realities over time. She finished by stating her desire for the Chips Act to help solidify a strong and resilient Europe while building the region’s relationships with democratic international allies.

Let’s create a Chips Act that plays to our strengths: cutting edge research, worker mobility, unity among nations and strong diplomatic relations. Not only should we pursue maximized production but maximized innovation. Europe can be the continent that creates Chips 2.0. Eva Maydell, Member of the European Parliament, EPP

A key takeaway from the event brought forward by panelists was that strong relationships with likeminded international partners like the U.S., Taiwan, and Japan were essential for the Act’s success. Both Eva Maydell and Lucilla Sioli emphasized the common objectives between the U.S. and EU and highlighted the importance of strengthening relationships to ensure economic competitiveness and semiconductor supply chain resilience. Eva Maydell went on to praise the EU and US Chips Acts as a great way for the two regions to merge transatlantic strategies and move forward together. Wouter Baljon and Christin Eisenschmid’s comments also underlined the value of symbiotic relationships with global partners and strategic competition to fortify the chips industry and ensure prosperity.

The bottom line: The EU Chips Act and the EU’s semiconductor industry’s success going forward will depend on the EU’s ability to fortify investments in its local production efforts and talent streams while working with its international partners to secure and ensure the stability and resilience of the essential semiconductor sector.

“The value chain is global, so it is important that we work with our like-minded global partners so we can have some kind of transparency in our value chain and anticipate any kind of disruptions and difficulties that can take place.” – Lucilla Sioli, Director for Artificial Intelligence and Digital Industry, DG Connect, European Commission

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