Japan seeks help from Taiwanese semicon companies after recent fire
Published 30 March 2021
Japan has sought help from some Taiwanese semiconductor manufacturers, after a fire had hit one of the chip plants, according to a Reuters report.
Industry minister Hiroshi Kajiyama said: “We are in communication with several manufacturing equipment makers (in Taiwan) to speed up procurement.” Earlier this month, A Renesas Electonic Corp-owned Naka chip plant in northeast Japan was hit by fire earlier this month due to a power surge in one of the machines.
This move is seen by the industry as an alternative approach for production of semiconductors, at a time when there is a shortage of semiconductors.
After the cabinet meeting, Kajiyama also added that the ministry will work together for a swift recovery by using all possible means.
The company, which has about a 30 per cent share of the global market for microcontroller unit chips used in cars, had initially said 11 machines were damaged in the fire. However, it now believes the situation is more serious than first thought.
An extended outage could add to a global shortages of chips which is disrupting some production of cars and electronic devices, Reuters said.
The Japanese government has called on equipment makers to help Renesas restore its production, with bureaucrats contacting companies at home and overseas to request they provide parts and machinery to the fire-hit company, a trade ministry official had told Reuters. Earlier this month, South Korea granted its approval to chipmaker SK Hynix for its $106 billion project to build a semiconductor complex.
South Korea said the latest investment is expected to ease supply shortages in the global market as well. South Korea’s exports of chips increased 5.6 per cent to $99.1 billion in 2020.