Economy minister visits Japan, strengthens semiconductor, electric vehicle exchanges

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Taipei, Sep 3 (CNA) Taiwanese Economy Minister Wang Mei-hua (王美花), who led a delegation to Japan earlier this week, has been pushing for bilateral cooperation in a wide range of areas, including semi -drivers and electric vehicles (EVs), the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said on Saturday.

In a statement, the MOEA said Wang, who left for Japan on August 28 before returning home on Saturday, witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding by the government’s Industrial Collaboration Promotion Bureau. Taiwan-Japan (TJPO) and Kumamoto Prefecture have a semiconductor supply chain partnership.

In addition to cooperation in the semiconductor supply chain, the TJPO and Kumamoto Prefecture will also team up in the development of cross-disciplinary innovation, the MOEA said.

The TJPO was established by the ministry in March 2021 with the aim of accelerating the pace of industrial cooperation between Taipei and Tokyo.

Japan and Taiwan have since strengthened their cooperation in semiconductor development, the MOEA said.

Japanese suppliers of materials and semiconductor production equipment have been keen to invest in Taiwan, the ministry added, citing a joint plan by Sumco Corp., the world’s second-largest silicon wafer maker, and the Taiwanese conglomerate Formosa Plastics Group.

The two companies are investing NT$28.2 billion ($92.45 billion) to build a 12-inch silicon wafer factory in Mailiao, Yunlin County, and production is expected to start in 2024.

The MOEA also noted a joint project with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) and a few Japanese companies to build a factory to begin mass production in 2024, deploying specialized chips using TSMC’s mature 22nm and 28nm technologies. .

Taiwan has taken a lead over its peers in the development of high-end semiconductor technologies and if Japanese suppliers of materials and semiconductor production equipment continue to cooperate, the two countries should strengthen their competitive advantage in the global market, Wang said in the statement. .

During Wang’s stay in Japan, she visited the Japan Business Federation, a major Japanese business group, and several companies to strengthen bilateral business relations, including Sumco, camera brand Canon, electricity supplier JERA Co., Mitsui Chemicals Inc., the manufacturer of Panasonic home appliances. , and IT solutions provider NEC Corp., according to the MOEA.

Asked about the shortage of talent in Taiwan by these Japanese companies, the ministry said Wang promised to expand talent exchanges and training between Taiwan and Japan to ensure the resilience of the semis’ supply chain. -drivers.

Taiwan has been good at designing integrated circuits and developing electronic hardware and software with respect to intellectual property rights, and has also been able to respond quickly to rapidly changing markets, and these strengths have enabled the countries to deploy critical components for electric vehicle use, Wang said.

Taiwan and Japan can aim for a bigger share of the global smart electric vehicle market through cooperation in car electronics, smart car cabins, and 5G and internet connections in vehicles, she added.

The economy minister also set her sights on huge business opportunities in reducing carbon emissions with Taiwan’s goal of reaching net zero emissions by 2050, the ministry said.

During his trip to Japan, Wang also explored the use of hydrogen to generate electricity with the aim of reducing thermal power generation and reducing carbon emissions, the MOEA said.

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