Press

08.02.2022

ZVEI: EU Chips Act is future-oriented, but must address a broader technological scope

9/2022

  • Comprehensive EU plan to strengthen the semiconductor industry and enable new investment opportunities 
  • However, planned EU market intervention is disproportionate

"With the European Chips Act, the European Commission is presenting a future-oriented, comprehensive package for the semiconductor industry. It is right to sustainably promote the entire semiconductor ecosystem in Europe. However, the focus on structure sizes below ten nanometres is too narrow and misses the needs of the European user industry," said Wolfgang Weber, CEO of the ZVEI Board, on today's introduction of the European Chips Act. "Europe must strengthen its competence in all structure sizes; power electronics and sensor technology are crucial for a successful green and digital transformation."

ZVEI also criticises the planned crisis monitoring mechanism. The far-reaching possibilities for market intervention by the European Union contained in the draft regulation, which would allow the EU to declare so-called semiconductor “crises stage” and then, if necessary, oblige individual manufacturers to prioritise specific orders, are disproportionate.  Weber: "This undermines the fundamental economic order and, in addition to legal concerns, also fails to recognise that semiconductor production cannot be technically switched overnight."

Still, ZVEI sees many good opportunities in the European Chips Act. It was right that direct measures - the Chips for Europe programme - strengthen technological competence in Europe and that direct investments with member state support are made in innovative and new production facilities within the second pillar of the draft regulation. Weber: "The EU Chips Act is also a wake-up call to finally strengthen the microelectronics industry in Europe in the long term and to avoid one-sided dependencies. But only in interaction with the IPCEIs and the planned European Alliance for Processor and Semiconductor Technologies, as well as a more inclusive involvement of industry, is there a chance to achieve the targeted global share of 20 percent of semiconductor production in Europe by 2030."