UPDATE Intel is investing $20 billion in new chipmaking plants in Arizona. It said Tuesday it would create two new plants and employ about 3,000 workers.
The move could help anchor technology supply chains to the United States — an advantage during a time when lawmakers are concerned about reliance on Asian manufacturers. The announcement dovetails with President Joe Biden’s recent executive order to help create more resilient and secure supply chains for critical and essential goods, including semiconductor chips used in telecom devices, Inside Towers reported.
Intel hopes the new plants will mean new business for the company. Not only will it build its own processors, like Core and Xeon, it’ll build other tech companies’ chips, too, according to The Hill.
The development comes amid a global shortage in semiconductor chips, which has left companies from telecoms to vehicle manufacturers scrambling for alternative supply lines. Manufacturers have seen the shortages, originally blamed on the COVID-19 pandemic, fail to abate amid rising demand and sluggish supply.
Qualcomm, Ericsson, Microsoft, Google, Amazon, and Cisco endorsed Intel’s move. So too, did new Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo. “Today, we celebrate American innovation and job creation. Intel’s investment will help to preserve U.S. technology innovation and leadership, strengthen U.S. economic and national security, and protect and grow thousands of high-tech, high-wage American jobs.”
She called Intel’s news “a great example of the benefits that come from investing in domestic semiconductor manufacturing capabilities.” Raimondo added: “We can create jobs, strengthen our national security as well as the security and resiliency of our supply chains. And we welcome additional announcements on U.S. manufacturing commitments by other firms as well.”