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CHIP MARKET Germany and Europe: semiconductor industry to be strengthened

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The associations VDE and ZVEI are working hard to ensure that Germany and Europe increase their capacities for the production of microelectronics chips, as they stated at the Microelectronics for Future 2022 Summit in Berlin. The EU Chips Act, which the EU Commission presented at the end of 2021, plays a special role here.

One of the goals is to create globally competitive investment environment.
One of the goals is to create globally competitive investment environment.
(Source: vladystock - stock.adobe.com)

"The EU Chips Act is highly significant because the microelectronics industry plays an essential role in Germany and Europe by supplying the user industries downstream in the supply chain," said ZVEI President Dr. Gunther Kegel. However, Kegel said additional funding must be made available for the EU Chips Act projects. "We can only survive in international competition if we implement important European industrial projects with a high level of commitment," Kegel emphasized in this context. The goal, he said, must be to substantially expand research, development and production through an active location policy and industrialization support. This also includes interpreting the concept of the EU Chips Act broadly so as not to bypass the needs of Europe's key industries, he said. "What is necessary is that the Chips Act takes into account all technologies and structural sizes of chips," Kegel said.

With well over 50 % of Europe's microelectronics production, Germany plays a leading role and must face up to its responsibilities. VDE President Dr. Armin Schnettler: "The demand for microelectronics will continue to rise due to the megatrends of electrification, digitalization and the energy transition." Locational disadvantages in the areas of settlement and operating costs, competition law and taxation would have to be eliminated. At the same time, a funding system must be established that makes and implements decisions quickly at regional, national and European level, Schnettler adds: "Europe needs non-discriminatory and crisis-proof access to global microelectronics solutions in order to remain technologically sovereign."

There is also a special focus on the issue of young talent. The VDE estimates that more than 19,000 new electrical engineers are needed each year. Schnettler points out that instead, the number of first-year students fell by another good four percent last year: "We need to do a better job of communicating to the younger generation that careers in electrical engineering and information technology have a lot to offer. These are not just secure, well-paid jobs with a future. We are actively helping to ensure that this world remains a world worth living in."

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