Commerce Sec Gina Raimondo Says Goal Is Not To Be Self Sufficient

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Brianna Lyman News and Commentary Writer
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U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said Monday on CNBC that the United States’ goal is not to be “self sufficient” when it comes to producing chips.

The Senate passed the multi-billion dollar CHIPS Plus Act in July which includes billions for semiconductor manufacturing through 2025, tax credits for semiconductor manufacturing in the U.S., and $200 billion for federal science, technology, engineering, and mathematics research. The Commerce Department recently unveiled its plan to implement the act, requiring companies to provide affordable childcare for employees among other expenses in order to qualify for federal aid.

Raimondo was asked Monday about the act on “Squawk on the Street.”

“I think it goes to the broader question here about what your ambitions are for the CHIPS Act as a whole, right? Because there was a research note even over the weekend from Bank of America saying, gone through all the provisions, gone through everything, it’s not going to create a competitor to Taiwan Semi. And ultimately Taiwan Semi is still going to be incentivized to keep a majority of its leading edge production in Taiwan. So is the goal here to be self sufficient … ? Like what, what does this industry in this country look like in coming years?” the host asked.

“The goal is not to be self sufficient, that is absolutely not the goal. We won’t achieve that. We will forever be buying chips from Taiwan, from Korea, from Europe, as you say, our allies and friends,” Raimondo said. (RELATED: Taiwanese Chip Giant Invests $30 Billion In Arizona Ahead Of Biden Visit)

“But the goal is to — right now we make zero leading edge semiconductors in the United States. We need to build at least two or — at least two, hopefully three, deep clusters of leading edge manufacturing in the United States and packaging. We want to be the only country in the world where we lead in research and development, software design, and do leading edge manufacturing and packaging on our shores. And we will achieve that goal, I have no doubt about it.”

The act was created in an effort to re-shore American chip manufacturing as many U.S. companies have moved their chip manufacturing offshore to save money, with chip production costing 50% more in the U.S. than in Taiwan, according to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company founder Morris Chang, Nikkei Asia reported.