“The EU Chips Act: A “Game Changer” For Europe May Be Game Over for Brexit”, Bob Savic (Federal Trust, United Kingdom)

The European Union’s (EU) Chips Act was agreed in principle at the end of April 2023 by the EU’s main political bodies.  The proposed legislation, described by European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, as a “game changer”, commits €43 billion in financial subsidies towards expanding the bloc’s semiconductor industry.

At present, the EU accounts for 9% of global chip production.  Under the Chips Act this will be boosted up to 20% by 2030.  The objective will also be to bolster the EU’s self-sufficiency, resilience and technological leadership in chip production.

During the pandemic key industries, such as the European automotive sector, were short of semiconductors as global supply chains became strained.  The pandemic hit the logistics in shipping chips from Asia, especially hard.  Taiwan, alone, manufactures 92% of the world’s most advanced chips and two-thirds of global semiconductor output. The EU also has an eye on rising geopolitical tensions between the US and China; resulting in Taiwan being at the centre of this storm.

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