Finance minister Sitharaman invites US chip companies to invest in India

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman
Indian finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman at a meeting in New Delhi, India, November 2020. Image by shganti777 | Bigstockphoto

India’s Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the country wants to emerge as a “reliable player” in the entire semiconductor value chain after launching a dedicated incentive scheme to entice global chipmakers to make further investments in India.

Sitharaman made the remarks at a roundtable meeting with US business leaders and investors in San Francisco. The roundtable was attended by senior executives, private sector business leaders, venture capitalists, institutional investors, and representatives of pension and endowment funds, representing combined assets under management of over $1 trillion.

While inviting the leading investors participating in the roundtable to become part of the India growth story, Sitharaman said that India is likely to remain the world’s fastest-growing major economy over the next few years.

During the roundtable, representatives from Micron Tech, Western Digital, AMD and others informed the minister that they have substantially scaled their capabilities in India in the last few years and are also collaborating with academia for R&D.

India’s finance ministry said in a tweet that US participants mentioned that in view of global supply chain disruptions, they need to review overreliance on supply chains in certain jurisdictions. The ministry also said that with the right policies and talent in place, the next decade will belong to India.

The Indian government approved the Semicon India Programme in December 2021 with an outlay of $10 billion. It recently received five applications for semiconductor and display fabs with total investment to the tune of $20.5 billion (Rs 153,750 crore) under the India Semiconductor Mission, which has been set up as a dedicated institution for the Semicon India Programme.

India has received applications for setting up 28-nm to 65-nm fabs with a capacity of approximately 120,000 wafers per month and a projected investment of $13.6 billion, wherein fiscal support of nearly $5.6 billion is being sought from the central government.

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