TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Following requests by several countries facing shortages of semiconductors especially for their car manufacturers, Taiwanese chip giants agreed to raise production levels after a meeting at the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) Wednesday (Jan. 27).
Earlier reports mentioned the Taiwanese companies considering price hikes of up to 15 percent for automotive chips, or the country even considering exchanging semiconductors for coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines.
As the governments of the United States, Japan, and Germany have asked for more chips, the MOEA and the National Development Council (NDC) invited senior executives of four chipmakers for a meeting over lunchboxes Wednesday, CNA reported.
The companies agreed to prioritize meeting the demand for automotive chips, Economics Minister Wang Mei-hua (王美花) said after the meeting. The four corporations said that any increased production capacity would be devoted to car chips, that they would hike the supply of chips to the carmakers, and that they would open talks with other customers to see if they wanted to reduce or delay their orders to benefit the automotive industry.
The companies involved in the agreement were Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC), Vanguard International Semiconductor Corp. (VIS), and Powerchip Technology Corp., according to the CNA report.
Wang said that the firms were already delivering their maximum effort to supply chips for laptops, computers, and phones amid a surge in demand powered by the coronavirus pandemic. The recent crisis over the shortage of automotive chips only served to emphasize the key role played by the Taiwanese semiconductor sector, the minister said.