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July 7, 2021 03:26 pm GMT

TSMC Under U.S. Pressure Over China Fab Expansion

TSMC is under pressure from the U.S. to reconsider its plans to expand its facilities in mainland China, sources close to the matter told DigiTimes. TSMC currently operates a fab near Shanghai, which it had originally planned to expand, meeting resistance from the U.S. It is not known if this is government (diplomatic) pressure or by U.S. based customers of TSMC., but is likely a combination of the two. The same forces were possibly behind getting TSMC to invest north of $3.5 billion toward a facility in Arizona with six more "Gigafabs" being planned in the southwestern state. U.S. hand-holding in TSMC's policymaking could be part of a strategy to deny cutting-edge silicon fabrication technology to China (PRC), and to help TSMC expand its manufacturing in safer regions as the security situation across the Taiwan strait continues to deteriorate. TSMC, specifically western tech companies' dependence on it, makes it a soft target on the island, and a bargaining chip to deter western military intervention.

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