TSMC founder Chang says US welcomes chipmaker’s Arizona plant plan

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US Vice President Kamala Harris welcomed Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.’s decision to open a second plant in Arizona and reiterated her government’s determination to help Taiwan, the company’s founder Morris Chang said.

Chang, who was speaking on Saturday as Taiwan’s special envoy at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Bangkok, said he had told Harris the US Secretary of Commerce had been invited to attend a ceremony for the $12 billion plant next month.

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The cost of making chips in Arizona may be at least 50 percent higher than in Taiwan, but that didn’t prevent the company from moving more of its production to the US, Chang said, adding “this is very important for the US and very much needed.”

TSMC, which retains most of its production in Taiwan, has started to diversify over the past year or so to help meet demand in countries seeking to bolster semiconductor production. The company is building a $7 billion plant in Japan, and is also in talks with Germany about potentially establishing a facility in the European country, Bloomberg has reported.

Chang said he briefly talked with China’s President Xi Jinping on Friday, and congratulated him on the success of the recently completed 20th Party Congress, However, he said they did not discuss any topics related to tensions over the Taiwan Strait.

Read more: TSMC eyes expansion in US, Japan to meet sustained chip demand

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