Tech giants press for state funds for US chip makers

Photo: AP

The world's biggest buyers of semiconductor chips revealed plans to set a lobbying group aimed to press for government financial involvement to offset the current market deficit, Reuters reported. The lobbing group will include major consumers like Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and Google and producers like Intel. The group will press for government chip manufacturing subsidies. It has already asked US lawmakers to provide funding for the CHIPS for America Act, for which President Joe Biden has asked Congress to provide $50 billion.

“Robust funding of the CHIPS Act would help America build the additional capacity necessary to have more resilient supply chains to ensure critical technologies will be there when we need them,” the group said in a letter to Democratic and Republican leaders in both houses of the US Congress. A global chip shortage has hit automakers hard, with Ford Motor Co saying it could halve second-quarter production. Automotive industry groups have pressed the Biden administration to secure chip supply for car factories. The new coalition includes some of those other chip-consuming industries, with members such as AT&T, Cisco Systems, General Electric, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Verizon Communications Inc. It cautioned against government actions to favor a single industry such as automakers. “Government should refrain from intervening as industry works to correct the current supply-demand imbalance causing the shortage,” the group said.

Tech companies such as Apple are also being hit by the chip shortage, but far less severely than automakers. The iPhone maker said last month it will lose $3 billion to $4 billion in sales in the current quarter ending in June because of the chip shortage.

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