MoS IT Chandrasekhar terms the announcements as a “significant and meaningful milestone” in the growth semiconductor ecosystem
The big-ticket announcements by players including Micron, Applied Materials, and Lam Research during Prime Minister Narendra Modi‘s US visit will create an estimated 80,000 jobs, and underscore the resolve of the two countries to shape the future of technology, Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar said on Friday. Minister of State for Electronics and IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar termed the announcements by Micron Technology, Applied Materials, and Lam Research as a “significant and meaningful milestone” and “central piece” in the growth semiconductor ecosystem in the country.
“These three investment decisions will create a minimum of 80,000 jobs directly in my estimate and indirectly the numbers could be much higher. More than that it will be a catalyst to the overall electronics and semiconductor ecosystem,” Rajeev Chandrasekhar said. US memory chip firm Micron Technology will set up its semiconductor assembly and test plant in Gujarat entailing a total investment of USD 2.75 billion (around Rs.22,540 crore), the company said on Thursday.
The total cost of the plant comprises USD 825 million (around Rs.6,760 crore) from Micron and the rest from the government in two phases. Micron said that the plant will create up to 5,000 new direct jobs and 15,000 community jobs over the next several years. Semiconductor equipment maker Applied Materials plans to invest USD 400 million in the next four years to build a collaborative engineering centre in Bengaluru.
The Government of India will focus on the development and commercialization of technologies for semiconductor manufacturing equipment. Lam Research proposes to train 60,000 Indian engineers through its Semiverse Solution virtual fabrication platform to accelerate India’s semiconductor education and workforce development goals.
“The PM’s vision is to make India a central presence in the global semiconductor value chain. And India is slowly and surely, after 75 years of being totally absent from the semiconductor space, becoming a growing force in the semiconductor ecosystem… From design to talent, and packaging to research and soon-to-be in Fab,” he said. The Minister termed Artificial Intelligence (AI) as a “force multiplier” and kinetic enabler of the digital economy, governance, and sectors like healthcare and education.
“We are clearly focused on AI. I feel confident that India-US partnership will shape the future of AI in many ways including use cases and tech innovation,” the Minister said. In areas of AI (Artificial Intelligence), and high-performance computing, the partnership between India and the US will shape the future of technology.
“The four areas of AI, high-performance computing, semiconductors, and quantum are critical emerging technologies that will shape the future of the world, of global economies, and lives of consumers and enterprise. And the fact that India and the US are going partner and help in shaping the future of these critical technologies is tremendous news not just for India, but for the world,” he said.
Asked about the status of the Vedanta-Foxconn proposal, the Minister said it is “under appraisal”. “We have opened the window and also changed the policy a bit, where we are also inviting mature nodes. I am sure that in the coming weeks and months, we will also get fab proposals, and we will evaluate them,” Chandrasekhar said.
His comments come amid Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the US, which has given a boost to the diplomatic, economic, and trade ties between both nations. According to a joint statement released on Friday, India and the US will focus on measures to facilitate greater technology sharing, co-production opportunities with semiconductors, 5G and 6G telecom networks, quantum, and high-end computing.
The statement dated June 22 released after the meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Joe Biden in the US, said that both governments have committed to promoting policies and adapting regulations to facilitate greater technology sharing, co-development, and co-production opportunities between the US and Indian industry, government, and academic institutions.
“The investment decisions announced by Micron, Applied Materials, and Lam Research are important milestones because they set markers in creating these world-class plants that will create memory modules that will go into smartphones, servers, laptops, and data Centres.
“As digitization accelerates, the demand for memory increases, and our PLIs in smartphones and IT hardware incentivizes (players) to domestically manufacture memory modules…So it is an absolutely strategic decision that has been made,” the Minister said.
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