Analysts predict that the chip industry’s technology gap between China and the West will likely grow. The U.S., Taiwan and Japan are making a lot of progress with leading-edge projects. Meanwhile, mainland Chinese foundries remain stranded at mature nodes due to U.S. export controls.
At its new plant in the U.S. state of Arizona, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) intended to make 5-nanometer chips in the initial stage and 3-nanometer chips after producing 5-nanometer chips.
TSMC is the world’s largest contract chipmaker. It is now constructing a $12 billion plant in Arizona.
At home, TSMC focuses on its next-generation 3-nm process, the more sophisticated 2-nm process, and 1-nm development in various parts of Taiwan.
According to Japanese public broadcaster NHK, eight major Japanese companies, including Toyota Motor, Sony Group, and telecoms giant NTT have teamed up to develop next-generation semiconductors. They aim to produce 2-nanometer chips within the next five years.
As the South China Morning Post reported, analysts predicted that the new U.S. restrictions targeting advanced nodes would cause the gap between China and the global chip leaders to grow even further.
Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC) in China can only mass-produce 14-nm chips. Those chips are only suitable for cars and home appliances.
Last month, the U.S. Commerce Department announced sweeping regulations restricting the sale of semiconductors and chip-making machinery to China. The agency also added 31 organizations to its unverified list, including Yangtze Memory Technologies Co. and a leading chip equipment maker Naura Technology Group Co subsidiary. The move will significantly limit their ability to buy technology from abroad.