According to the company’s founder, Morris Chang, the world has just been awakened by the importance of advanced chips.
Taiwanese chipmaker TSMC plans to produce chips with advanced 3-nanometer technology at its new plant in Arizona, US, but plans are not yet finalized, company founder Morris Chang said Monday.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co, a major Apple supplier and the world’s largest contract chipmaker, is building a $12 billion factory in Arizona.
Last year, the Reuters news agency reported TSMC’s plans to build more chip-making factories in Arizona, including discussions about whether the next factory should be more advanced that could make chips with 3-nanometer technology compared to the slower , less efficient 5-nanometer chips that will be produced when the facility begins production.
Speaking to reporters in Taipei after returning from the APEC summit in Thailand, Chang said the 3-nanometer plant would be co-located in Arizona with the 5-nanometer plant.
“Three nanometers, TSMC has a plan right now, but it’s not quite finalized yet,” said Chang, who has retired from TSMC but remains influential in the company and the broader chip industry.
“It is almost complete – at the same site in Arizona, phase two. Five nanometers is phase one, 3 nanometers is phase two.”
TSMC, Asia’s most valuable publicly traded company, declined to comment.
The company will hold a tool-in ceremony in Arizona on Dec. 6.
Chang said he would be attending along with customers and suppliers from TSMC and US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo.
Chang added that US President Joe Biden has also been invited but did not know if he would go.
Taiwan’s dominant position as a maker of chips used in technology from mobile phones and cars to fighter jets has led to concerns that the world is overly dependent on the island, especially as China steps up military pressure to assert its sovereignty claims.
The United States and Europe are pouring billions into incentives to get companies making chips closer to home, courting Taiwanese companies in particular.
Chang said people had just woken up and realized how important chips were.
“There are many envious people, envious of Taiwan’s excellent chip production,” he said. “So there are also a lot of people who, for various reasons, whether it’s for national security or to make money, are hoping to make more chips in their country.”
Chang said during his meetings at APEC, “Many countries asked me if we can go to their country and make chips?”
He did not say which countries those were.