Taiwan dethrones South Korea to rule in semiconductor market

Taiwan secured biggest market share in global sales of semiconductor equipment

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Wafer (Getty Images photo)

Wafer (Getty Images photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan claimed the lion’s share of the global semiconductor market last year, removing South Korea from the top spot, according to a report released by industry association Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI).

Global sales in semiconductor equipment logged US$59.8 billion in 2019, reflecting a 7 percent drop from 2018. Taiwan raked in US$17.12 billion in sales, which represented a 68 percent growth.

China retained second place with sales of US$13.45 billion. South Korea, whose sales plummeted 44 percent to US$9.97 billion, was dethroned and slipped to the third spot.

Semiconductor equipment sales grew for the third year in a row in North America, which logged US$8.15 billion. This is in contrast to the other regions in the world; Europe, Japan, and everywhere else saw sales dip 46 percent, 34 percent, and 38 percent, respectively.

Wafer processing equipment sales were down 6 percent in 2019, while other front-end segment sales rose 9 percent. Sales of assembly and packaging, as well as test equipment, reported lack-luster performances, falling 27 percent and 11 percent, respectively.