While in Taiwan House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) met with the island’s top semiconductor industry leaders as the US is looking to gain an edge on China when it comes to chip manufacturing.
Pelosi’s trip came after Congress passed the CHIPS and Science Act, a massive $280 billion piece of legislation that includes $52 billion in subsidies for companies to build and expand chip manufacturing facilities.
Pelosi met with the chairman of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC), the world’s biggest chip manufacturer, to discuss the CHIPS and Science Act. The meeting signals that the US is looking to entice TSMC to open more facilities in the US with the subsidies included in the legislation.
TSMC is currently building a $12 billion semiconductor facility in Arizona, which is expected to be operational by 2024.
Pelosi said at a news conference in Taiwan on Wednesday that the CHIPS and Science Act means more cooperation between the US and Taiwan. “We just passed the CHIPS and Science Act. That is something that opens the door for us to have better economic exchanges,” she said.
While looking to boost its domestic chip production, the US is trying to hurt China’s ability to manufacture semiconductors with sanctions. The US is also pressing the Netherlands-based ASML Holding NV and the Japan-based Nikon Corporation not to sell the technology needed to manufacture semiconductors to China.
But US sanctions appear to have backfired as China’s chip industry is now the fastest growing in the world. According to Bloomberg, 19 of the world’s 20 fastest-growing chip industry firms over the past four quarters, on average, hail from China.
Pelosi’s husband, Paul Pelosi, has been under scrutiny for his trading of semiconductor stocks amid allegations of insider trading. In June, he purchased stocks in Nvidia, an American chip company. He then sold 25,000 shares of Nvidia stock at a loss the day before the House passed the CHIPS and Science Act. Overall, global semiconductor stocks took a hit due to Pelosi’s trip and the uncertainty it caused.