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India’s Semiconductor Programme to Focus on Chip Design Ecosystem Now: Ashwini Vaishnaw

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India’s semiconductor program is gearing up for a significant shift, with a renewed focus on fostering the chip design ecosystem. Union Minister of Electronics and Information Technology, Ashwini Vaishnaw, announced plans to develop at least 10 chipsets entirely within India, covering design, fabrication, and packaging processes.

“The second version of Semicon will focus on getting at least 10 chipsets which are full solutions and taking those solutions down the value chain of fab (fabrication) and ATMP (assembly, testing, and packaging process),” Vaishnaw stated in an interview with Moneycontrol.

The Semicon India program, approved by the Centre in 2021 with an outlay of INR 76,000 Cr, aims to bolster the semiconductor and display manufacturing ecosystem nationwide. In addition to chipsets, the focus will extend to critical aspects like equipment for semiconductor manufacturing and the design of cleanrooms for semiconductor facilities.

Vaishnaw emphasized the involvement of key industry players, noting, “I met with three companies who are very big leaders in this and they are all willing to be a part of the India semiconductor mission.”

Furthermore, the government is strategizing to produce the 16,000 gases required in a chip fabrication plant domestically. This initiative aligns with recent cabinet approvals for three semiconductor proposals from private companies, with a combined investment of INR 1.26 Lakh Cr.

Among these proposals is the Tata Group’s plan to establish India’s first semiconductor fab plant in Gujarat, in collaboration with Taiwan’s Powerchip Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp (PSMC). Additionally, the US-based semiconductor company, Micron, is underway with setting up an ATMP plant in Gujarat, with an investment exceeding INR 22,000 Cr.

The government’s concerted efforts to bolster the semiconductor ecosystem have already yielded tangible results, notably seen in the proliferation of semiconductor startups across the country.

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