Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo testifies before the Senate Appropriation Committee during a hearing in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. April 20, 2021.
Somodevilla Chip | Swimming Pool | Reuters
The U.S. Commerce Department is pressing Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co and other Taiwanese companies to prioritize demand from U.S. automakers to curb chip shortages in the near term, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said on Wednesday. Tuesday
Raimondo told the Council of the Americas that, over the long term, more investment is needed to produce more semiconductors in the United States and other key supply chains need to be readjusted, including allied nations.
“We are working hard to see if we can get a Taiwanese and TSMC, a big company there, to prioritize the needs of our auto companies because there are a lot of American jobs in the line,”; said Raimondo. Answering questions from General Motors executives
“As I said, there is never going to go by that we are not going to push that,” she said, adding to the medium- and long-term solution is “just building more chips in America.”
TSMC said fixing the shortage remains a top priority.
“TSMC has worked with all parties to alleviate the automotive chip shortage, we understand that it is a common concern of the global automotive industry,” it said in a Reuters statement on Wednesday.
TSMC CEO CC Wei said last month that it has been working with customers since January to allocate new production capacity to support the auto industry. But the shortage worsened due to snowstorms in Texas and disruptions to production in Japan.
Wei expects chip shortages for auto customers to drop significantly from the next quarter.
The Commerce Department is planning a high-level meeting with the automakers coming next week on chip shortages, officials said at a briefing on the matter. A Commerce Department spokesman declined to comment.
Josh Nassar, legislative director of United Auto Workers, said in a written affidavit for the U.S. House of Commons hearing on Wednesday that the chip shortage resulted in the layoffs. “Tens of thousands of workers … Obviously we need to support domestic automotive quality semiconductor production.”
Last week, Ford Motor warned that chip shortages could halve second-quarter production at costs.
About $ 2.5 billion and about 1.1 million units of production lost in 2021.
GM said Friday it would extend production shutdowns at several North American plants due to shortages.
On April 12, Biden called a meeting of semiconductor and automotive industry executives to discuss solutions to the chip crisis. He contributed $ 50 billion to support US chip manufacturing and research.