News Feds Keeps Pushing TSMC to Make Chips in the US

They're a business. Pay them to build a fab in the US. TSMC spent $9.3bn on Fab15 in Taiwan. I'm sure they'd be perfectly happy to use a Fab in the US for the military, US contractors and many other companies if it was paid for. That amount of money is a drop in the bucket for the current yearly military budget. Especially if it means chip security. Plus that cost would be amortized over multiple years.

Given how long military hardware stays in service. That Fab could continue in service for a long time.
 
The US Gov't owns several fabs for specialty chips. However they are all extremely dated tech.

Pay TSMC the cost to build a new one, and then licensing royalties. But let the US Gov't keep it and admin it. That way it can't be changed or shut down on a whim due to the Chinese Gov't.
 

margrave

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The phrases "running a business" and "let the government keep it and admin it" are thoroughly incompatible.
 

Giroro

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They're a business. Pay them to build a fab in the US. TSMC spent $9.3bn on Fab15 in Taiwan. I'm sure they'd be perfectly happy to use a Fab in the US for the military, US contractors and many other companies if it was paid for. That amount of money is a drop in the bucket for the current yearly military budget. Especially if it means chip security. Plus that cost would be amortized over multiple years.

Given how long military hardware stays in service. That Fab could continue in service for a long time.

$9.3Billion is not a drop in the bucket... Unless you have a bucket that only contains 75 drops, but that's smaller than a teaspoon, according to google.

If your bucket holds 5 gallons, 9.3 billion is about the size of an 8 ounce cup.
..and then you have to decide what other programs get shut down and who gets laid off in order to free up that cup in the bucket.
 
$9.3Billion is not a drop in the bucket... Unless you have a bucket that only contains 75 drops, but that's smaller than a teaspoon, according to google.

If your bucket holds 5 gallons, 9.3 billion is about the size of an 8 ounce cup.
..and then you have to decide what other programs get shut down and who gets laid off in order to free up that cup in the bucket.
Assuming the fab ran for only five years. When amortized for five years it would only be 0.27% of the DOD yearly budget. That's a small price to pay for chip manufacturing security. Although it would likely be used for much longer. Given how long military tech stays in service.

That security would mean the DOD has a reliable source of chips in times of war. Not only that. A source free of potentially malicious embedded chips. Assuming the US Gov admins it and pays licensing rights instead. As @digitalgriffin suggested.

The cost could be further offset by other government departments. As agencies like the NSA, Homeland Security, NASA, DOE, SEC, &c would also use the locally sourced chips.
 
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Murissokah

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Building a FAB for military use only could present a few challenges for TSMC. Their business is very large scale and their costs and processes are built around that. Even if they built every single piece of military chip for the US, which would be a problem in itself, it would probably still be way too low to achieve reasonable prices.
 

TCA_ChinChin

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Their name is literally Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company. Why should they have to listen to the US government about building fabs in the US at all, unless there is a business or monetary incentive? Yes, they have plenty of manufacturing that is based in the PRC, but they don't have to answer to the CCP. If anything, they are more under the jurisdiction of the Taiwanese government. Above all, they are a business. If it made monetary sense to move more manufacturing to Taiwan or the US, or some other country, they will do it and the geo-politics that come with dealing the CCP might push them to do that. However, until that moment comes, the only thing this looks like to me is government oversight in pushing a private company, something that I thought the current administration doesn't approve of.
 

alextheblue

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Their name is literally Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company. Why should they have to listen to the US government about building fabs in the US at all, unless there is a business or monetary incentive? Yes, they have plenty of manufacturing that is based in the PRC, but they don't have to answer to the CCP. If anything, they are more under the jurisdiction of the Taiwanese government. Above all, they are a business. If it made monetary sense to move more manufacturing to Taiwan or the US, or some other country, they will do it and the geo-politics that come with dealing the CCP might push them to do that. However, until that moment comes, the only thing this looks like to me is government oversight in pushing a private company, something that I thought the current administration doesn't approve of.
The concern isn't so much what is happening today with TSMC. The concern is what happens when China seizes Taiwan by force and tells the world "this is ours". Outside of the US I'm not sure anyone would even try to stop them. The EU will go full appeasement (not for the first time), nobody else in Asia has the power to stop them, the Russ would approve, and so on.
 

JWolfe

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I think you mean wary, not weary, in the sub title!
They are an interesting pair of words to vary by one letter only.
 

traxxmy

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LOL "weary of interference " china?. I'm more worry about US spying and love to create war and attack people. Now i will choose other product if i see it is "made in usa". Just few day ago i even move my dropbox cloud storage to koofr. More secure from prying US.
 

TCA_ChinChin

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The concern isn't so much what is happening today with TSMC. The concern is what happens when China seizes Taiwan by force and tells the world "this is ours". Outside of the US I'm not sure anyone would even try to stop them. The EU will go full appeasement (not for the first time), nobody else in Asia has the power to stop them, the Russ would approve, and so on.
I don't think that China will ever be able to seize Taiwan. As long as the US has any interest in Taiwan, China won't be able to invade. If Taiwan ever gets invaded by China, then the world has a lot more to worry about then getting cheap chips from Asian fabs.
 

TCA_ChinChin

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LOL "weary of interference " china?. I'm more worry about US spying and love to create war and attack people. Now i will choose other product if i see it is "made in usa". Just few day ago i even move my dropbox cloud storage to koofr. More secure from prying US.
I mean neither is good, but at least the US supports humans rights (in theory).
 

alextheblue

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I don't think that China will ever be able to seize Taiwan. As long as the US has any interest in Taiwan, China won't be able to invade. If Taiwan ever gets invaded by China, then the world has a lot more to worry about then getting cheap chips from Asian fabs.
First, I wouldn't count on it being that way forever. China's rise to power over the past FEW DECADES is nothing short of meteoric. They're making serious inroads (military and economic) all over the world.

Second, they're not concerned about "getting cheap chips". We're talking about secure, custom chips used in military and other government hardware, via the DoD's Trusted Foundry program. It's not a big issue today, but the most advanced US-based fab in the TP program is GF, and they abandoned 7nm. As more of these projects seek to move beyond what 14/12nm GF can offer, this is going to increasingly become a concern.

With that being said, perhaps they should have worked with GF to help fund their 7nm. Too late now, I think that ship has sailed, and I'm not sure how FDX will shake out. Now their best bet to secure a US-based TP fab is to talk TSMC into building one. Now that they've surpassed the others, TSMC can always use more capacity anyway.
 

bit_user

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Can't they just fab their chips at Global Foundries? They have one plant in Vermont and two in New York. If the chips they're talking about are in the F-35, then certainly they're not (or don't need to be) made on a 7 nm node. I'd think Global Foundries' 12 nm would be more than good enough.

Barring that, didn't Intel have a foundry business, where they fabbed chips for 2nd or 3rd parties? I'm sure they've slammed the brakes on that, with their current production issues, but presumably it'll come back.
 

TCA_ChinChin

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First, I wouldn't count on it being that way forever. China's rise to power over the past FEW DECADES is nothing short of meteoric. They're making serious inroads (military and economic) all over the world.

Second, they're not concerned about "getting cheap chips". We're talking about secure, custom chips used in military and other government hardware, via the DoD's Trusted Foundry program. It's not a big issue today, but the most advanced US-based fab in the TP program is GF, and they abandoned 7nm. As more of these projects seek to move beyond what 14/12nm GF can offer, this is going to increasingly become a concern.

With that being said, perhaps they should have worked with GF to help fund their 7nm. Too late now, I think that ship has sailed, and I'm not sure how FDX will shake out. Now their best bet to secure a US-based TP fab is to talk TSMC into building one. Now that they've surpassed the others, TSMC can always use more capacity anyway.
I don't see how China can influence TSMC to make more or less secure chips unless they take over Taiwan. Like I said, TSMC is a company headquartered in Taiwan and will listen to Taiwanese government (and it's US ally) more than the Chinese government. Making a chip fab in the US is more about trying to move more manufacturing jobs to the US rather than security in actuality. If the US militart cared about security against Chinese spying, they have a hundred more significant problems to worry about before needing to address TSMC's proximity to the CCP.
 

TJ Hooker

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I don't see how China can influence TSMC to make more or less secure chips unless they take over Taiwan.
I think that's more or less the concern. Mainland China considers Taiwan to be part of China. All it takes is for China to decide it wants Taiwan to do something and then Taiwan either acquiesces or it doesn't. If it doesn't you have the possibility that China decides that it's going to bring Taiwan back into the fold by force (military or otherwise). Other countries will be hesitant to step in, because no one wants to start WW3.

Just look at what's happening in Hong Kong after China tried to tighten their grip and HK refused.

The groups that came to control mainland China and Taiwan were two side of the Chinese civil war, and they never actually signed any peace treaty. One could argue that the (cold) war between China and Taiwan never officially ended.
 
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bit_user

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Just look at what's happening in Hong Kong after China tried to tighten their grip and HK refused.
Uh, well that's not really what happened. China has been continually ratcheting up control of the province and simply went a bit too far, too fast. So, they had to pause. That's all that's really happened.

And now, they look to be rolling out more surveillance technology and beefing up the police. No doubt, when the next wave of protests break out, Hong Kong's police will be ready for them. Plus, I'm sure they're doing a lot, in the realm of online surveillance and disinformation.

Also, mainland Chinese are continually moving to Hong Kong, shifting the cultural and political mix. This is not a subtle phenomenon, since it also involves a push to switch from Cantonese to Mandarin. Of course, it also pushes the Hong Kong government towards a more mainland-biased stance.

Of course, mainlanders are also moving to Tawain and buying up property, there. And, they're luring a lot of the young Taiwanese students to study and work on the mainland. In something like 100 years, you might have the two territories naturally growing together. However, Xi Xinping doesn't look to be that patient.
 

TCA_ChinChin

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I think that's more or less the concern. Mainland China considers Taiwan to be part of China. All it takes is for China to decide it wants Taiwan to do something and then Taiwan either acquiesces or it doesn't. If it doesn't you have the possibility that China decides that it's going to bring Taiwan back into the fold by force (military or otherwise). Other countries will be hesitant to step in, because no one wants to start WW3.

Just look at what's happening in Hong Kong after China tried to tighten their grip and HK refused.

The groups that came to control mainland China and Taiwan were two side of the Chinese civil war, and they never actually signed any peace treaty. One could argue that the (cold) war between China and Taiwan never officially ended.
I don't believe that China would take that risk. It's simply not worth it for them to absorb Taiwan and alienate themselves from the rest of the world which they depend on so much for exports.
 

TCA_ChinChin

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Uh, well that's not really what happened. China has been continually ratcheting up control of the province and simply went a bit too far, too fast. So, they had to pause. That's all that's really happened.

And now, they look to be rolling out more surveillance technology and beefing up the police. No doubt, when the next wave of protests break out, Hong Kong's police will be ready for them. Plus, I'm sure they're doing a lot, in the realm of online surveillance and disinformation.

Also, mainland Chinese are continually moving to Hong Kong, shifting the cultural and political mix. This is not a subtle phenomenon, since it also involves a push to switch from Cantonese to Mandarin. Of course, it also pushes the Hong Kong government towards a more mainland-biased stance.

Of course, mainlanders are also moving to Tawain and buying up property, there. And, they're luring a lot of the young Taiwanese students to study and work on the mainland. In something like 100 years, you might have the two territories naturally growing together. However, Xi Xinping doesn't look to be that patient.
I'm not so sure on the cultural growing together of the two countries. On an anecdotal level, I know many Taiwanese people and Chinese people and while many of the CCP members see a unification sometime in the future, most Taiwanese I talk to are fine with being separate countries. Even the recent Taiwan election has proven that to be the case.
 

bit_user

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most Taiwanese I talk to are fine with being separate countries.
That's not surprising, given that they currently stand to lose from any change in status. Over time, that could shift, particularly if the mainland continues on its upward economic trajectory and Taiwan continues on its current downward trend.

Even the recent Taiwan election has proven that to be the case.
That was very much a rebuke against China's handling of Hong Kong.

It was exacerbated by Tsai Ing-wen's conflation of the 1992 Concensus agreement with China with the "One Coutry, Two Systems" governance arrangement of Taiwan. In fact, it implied no such thing. However, when taken in the context of recent events in Hong Kong, it's no surprise that the Taiwanese electorate was moved by fear to re-elect her. Or so I'm told.

Anyway, the point is that it's misleading to look at the long term relationship through the lens of current events. They are likely more of an aberration. Although, as Xi Jinping is pretty much a wildcard, who knows?
 

TCA_ChinChin

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Anyway, the point is that it's misleading to look at the long term relationship through the lens of current events. They are likely more of an aberration. Although, as Xi Jinping is pretty much a wildcard, who knows?
Xi Jinping is I think is a main reason that Taiwan and many Taiwanese will be more wary in the future than what the past relationship between China and Taiwan has been moving toward. China is being more aggressive than in their past in an economic, military, and diplomatic sense in these recent few years than the warming up that was before China was seen as a major global player. Of course this is my own speculation, but with the way that Jinping is pushing things, thats my two cents.
 
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TJ Hooker

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Uh, well that's not really what happened. China has been continually ratcheting up control of the province and simply went a bit too far, too fast. So, they had to pause. That's all that's really happened.

And now, they look to be rolling out more surveillance technology and beefing up the police. No doubt, when the next wave of protests break out, Hong Kong's police will be ready for them. Plus, I'm sure they're doing a lot, in the realm of online surveillance and disinformation.

Also, mainland Chinese are continually moving to Hong Kong, shifting the cultural and political mix. This is not a subtle phenomenon, since it also involves a push to switch from Cantonese to Mandarin. Of course, it also pushes the Hong Kong government towards a more mainland-biased stance.

Of course, mainlanders are also moving to Tawain and buying up property, there. And, they're luring a lot of the young Taiwanese students to study and work on the mainland. In something like 100 years, you might have the two territories naturally growing together. However, Xi Xinping doesn't look to be that patient.
Are we really disagreeing? I don't really see how what you're saying is all that different than what I did. China wants something from a province (or what they maintain is a province), either they get it or they don't, and when they don't they've demonstrated they're not afraid to get nasty. That's what's happening in HK, and therefore what some people are worried about for Taiwan. Whether it will actually happen in Taiwan is obviously up for debate though.
 
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TJ Hooker

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I don't believe that China would take that risk. It's simply not worth it for them to absorb Taiwan and alienate themselves from the rest of the world which they depend on so much for exports.
Is that not more or less what they did with Tibet? I suppose that was a long time ago, but the tension and conflict are still very much alive. And they've made it clear in the present that they're not afraid to do horrible things to their own citizens with little regard to what the international community thinks about it, and their official stance is that the Taiwanese are citizens of the PRC.
 
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TCA_ChinChin

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Is that not more or less what they did with Tibet? I suppose that was a long time ago, but the tension and conflict are still very much alive. And they've made it clear in the present that they're not afraid to do horrible things to their own citizens with little regard to what the international community thinks about it, and their official stance is that the Taiwanese are citizens of the PRC.
The world forgot and still forgets Tibet's existence. Taiwan has been under the US sphere of influence for decades and thus any action near Taiwan will spawn more scrutiny. I don't really think that the US cares as a government about the human rights abuses that China performs daily. They just care about cheap (with no Chinese backdoors, only NSA approved ones) chips from Taiwan.
 

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