US chip company chiefs have urged President Joe Biden to back them with funding to help them compete with their Asian rivals.
The chief executives of Intel, Qualcomm, Micron, and Advanced Micro Devices all put their names to a joint letter on Thursday asking for “substantial funding for incentives for semiconductor manufacturing” as part of his economic recovery and infrastructure plans.
A new Reuters report notes that the letter, sent by the Semiconductor Industry Association, highlighted that the country’s share of chip manufacturing has dropped to just 12 percent today from 37 percent in 1990.
“Our technology leadership is at risk in the race for preeminence in the technologies of the future, including artificial intelligence, 5G/6G, and quantum computing,” the letter said.
Semiconductors are mostly manufactured in countries like Taiwan and Korea, which have come to dominate the industry.
“This is largely because the governments of our global competitors offer significant incentives and subsidies to attract new semiconductor manufacturing facilities, while the US does not,” the group said.
Congress last year authorized subsidies for chip manufacturing and semiconductor research, but lawmakers must still decide how much funding to provide. The US chip group urged Biden to provide such funding in the form of grants or tax credits.
“Working with Congress, your administration now has an historic opportunity to fund these initiatives to make them a reality,” the group wrote. “We believe bold action is needed to address the challenges we face. The costs of inaction are high.”