Foundry Power Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (Hsinchu, Taiwan), is in talks with the Indian government about helping build a wafer fab there, according to a Digitimes report. The report says the disclosure came from PSMC chair Frank Huang.
PSMC offers a broad variety of manufacturing process technologies behind the leading-edge including logic, DRAM and flash memory, PMICs, CMOS image sensors, and high-voltage circuits. It is Taiwan’s third largest foundry TSMC and UMC.
There has been speculation that PSMC could be used to assist local companies such as Vedanta or Tata who have expressed a desire to enter the chip industry.
The Indian government introduced an incentive scheme at the start of 2021 to try and encourage inward investors to build semiconductor and electronics manufacturing plants in India (see Indian subsidies fail to attract top chipmakers). It also lobbied hard with the Taiwanese government (see India asks Taiwan to include wafer fab in trade deal).
The plans announced so far have remained ones primarily of intention with little action on the ground.
Indian metals and mining conglomerate Vedanta teamed up with Hon Hai Precision Industries (Foxconn) and now has an agreement to set up a wafer fab, a semiconductor assembly and test unit, and a display factory in the state of Gujurat. However, questions have been asked over Foxconn’s ability to deliver the semiconductor IP and know-how. PSMC could be provide additional credibility to this plan.
A joint venture between foundry Tower Semiconductor Ltd. (Migdal Haemek, Israel) and Abu Dhabi based Next Orbit Ventures called Indian Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (ISMC) seems to have better prospects. A location at Mysuru, Karnataka has been selected a wafer fab for 65nm analog circuits. However the progress so far is essentially the signing of a memorandum of understanding (see Tower JV signs agreement to build Indian wafer fab). Tower is in the process of getting acquired by Intel.
Singapore-based IGSS Ventures plans to spend about US$3.25 billion in the southern state of Tamil Nadu.
Steel to automotive giant Tata Group has also said it plans to enter the semiconductor business in India. So far it has been reported scouting locations for a semiconductor assembly and test facility (see Tata in talks over $300 million Indian chip packaging factory).
PSMC executives were part of a recent Taiwanese delegation to Dholera in Gujurat and to visit India’s oldest semiconductor facility, Semi-Conductor Laboratory (SCL) in Mohali, according to Indian publication Business Today.