Toni Versluijs, country manager at Nexperia UK, will give oral evidence to Members of Parliament about the domestic semiconductor sector on Tuesday July 5 in the morning.

Versluijs, who is responsible for Nexperia Newport, formerly Newport Wafer Fab, will speak alongside Americo Lemos, CEO of wafer supplier, IQE plc and Simon Thomas, CEO of graphene device specialist Paragraf Ltd.Versluijs is likely to be asked by MPs about the acquisition of Newport Wafer Fab, the UK’s largest wafer fab, and its significance to the domestic chip sector.

In a separate session Simon Beresford-Wylie, CEO of Imagination Technologies; Paul Williamson, general manager of the client line of business at ARM; and Andrew Rickman CEO of Rockley Photonics will also give evidence.

The meetings have been called by UK government’s Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee. They form part of an inquiry into the state of the semiconductor industry in the UK and its ability to supply chips. The inquiry was started after several industries have found their manufacturing capability curtailed by chip supply chain bottlenecks (see UK government opens inquiry about domestic semiconductor industry).

What’s to be done?

The committee may question company leaders about weaknesses in the supply chains and may ask what the government can do to improve the UK supply chain and skills base.

At about the same time the general government inquiry was set up the sale of Newport Wafer Fab to Nexperia, owned by Wingtech of Shanghai, China, was called into question by the government. This was nearly a year after the deal completed (see Newport Wafer Fab sale comes under investigation).

The NWF acquisition is being assessed under the National Security and Investment Act which came into force at the beginning of 2022. However, it remains unclear whether the UK government could effectively overturn the deal.

Related links and articles:

News articles:

UK government opens inquiry about domestic semiconductor industry

Newport Wafer Fab sale comes under investigation

Nexperia’s Toni Versluijs takes questions on the Newport deal

Newport Wafer Fab seeks funds for capacity expansion

China’s Nexperia buys Newport Wafer Fab amid concerns

Newport Wafer Fab under threat of Chinese takeover

UK government helps NWF develop GaN foundry process

Opinion: Is the West still blind to China’s ‘buy-the-tech’ strategy?


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