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The world must see India emerge as a resilient semiconductor partner

It is important for the world to see India emerge as a trusted, resilient partner in the electronics and semiconductor space, Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar said here on Saturday, and asserted the world wants to partner with India for the country to grow its footprints in the semiconductor ecosystem.

Talking to PTI on the sidelines of the Semicon India 2023 event organised at Mahatma Mandir here, he said Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision for the sector is to create more and more opportunities for young Indians studying in colleges.

The chip shortage witnessed recently was a combination of supply chain disruptions due to the Russia-Ukraine war and the COVID pandemic as well as the increased demand for chips in automotive, IOT, computer, mobile phones and mobile telephony, the Union Minister of State for Electronics and IT said.

“So, on the one hand, demand was going up, and on the other hand, we saw concentration of chip production in a few countries. It is important now for the world and for India that India emerges as a trusted partner, as a resilient partner, in electronics as well as semiconductors,” he said.

He said the Indian market, its geopolitics, geography and talent makes the country “the ideal trusted partner” for global consumers of semiconductors and electronics.

The Union minister said signing of agreements between India and the United States of America as well as Japan and European Union for semiconductors shows “the world wants to partner with India for India to grow its footprints in the semiconductor ecosystem.” He asserted that young Indians, to a large extent, are the ones who are going to lead the charge in the semiconductor ecosystem.

Chandrasekhar, who also holds the portfolio of entrepreneurship and skill development, said the total economic activity that is going to be created in this cutting-edge area is more important than the quantum of investment, as this will lead to more and more opportunities for young Indians.

“This is being built really for the future of India and his (Prime Minister’s) vision is that in the future India will be a leading player, a leading presence in the semiconductor supply chains of the world, from design to research to talent to ATMP (assembly, testing, marking), to fabrication and manufacturing,” he said.

The Union minister called this the “decadal vision” of PM Modi.

Both in terms of design and research, PM Modi’s vision is to create more and more startups, and the government has already approved seven startups under the Design Linked Incentive (DLI) scheme, he said.

“We are looking at talent, we are looking at design, we are looking at research, we are looking at manufacturing through fabs and ATMP,” he said, adding that US semiconductor chip giant Micron announcing a big investment to set up India’s first ever ATMP for memory is a very important milestone.

The Gujarat government recently signed a memorandum of understanding worth Rs 22,500 crore with Micron Technology to establish an ATMP facility in the state.

“We are deeply hopeful and very confident that over the next 12 to 14 months, we will see the first chips assembled and tested in India, being available to the Indian market and Indian consumers and indeed made in India for the world,” Chandrasekhar said.

The first ‘Made in India’ memories are likely to go into products like servers, data centres, and hopefully down the road into mobile phones in the next 12-15 months’ time frame, he said.

The government will shortly launch the India Semiconductor Research Centre, which will be a global standard facility for research in material sciences, physics and the chemistry of semiconductors, electronics and design at the basic component level, the Union minister said.

Chandrasekhar said Semicon India, in just 15 months of its inception, has grown to become a global, must-attend event for all in the semiconductor space. PTI

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