Unfortunately building a semiconductor manufacturing facility is not as easy as flipping a switch. despite the $52 billion investment the CHIPS Act would provide in aid to the semiconductor industry, it still does not completely solve the source of our problems.
We could definitely solve many of these chip shortages a lot faster if we could get this Chips Act passed & confront the true shortage of capital equipment that is manufactured by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).
Today OEMs are experiencing some of the worst extended lead times on parts and some of the worst supply chain issues they have ever had to deal with as they attempt to produce the highest amount of orders they have ever seen. With all the compounding problems, OEMs are also experiencing supply chain lags, staffing issues, geopolitical tensions, and COVID shutdowns around the world. Today, most OEMs struggle to produce and fill the current backlogs of equipment orders for their customers like Intel, Samsung, & TSMC.
Although it does not seem likely they will immediately solve many of these issues at hand, it may take some out-of-box thinking and time to solve many of these bigger problems. Companies like Moov Technologies and GTI are attempting to solve some of these issues by refurbishing older equipment and reselling idle or unused equipment to companies that are either using older technology or just can not wait for the extended lead times we are seeing for purchasing equipment today.
To deal with chip shortages, we have to confront the problem at the source. Capital Equipment spending is expected to reach $98 billion in 2022. As it turns from a chip shortage to a manufacturing equipment shortage OEMs and Fabs will have to work together and in conjunction with government funding to proactively plan and deal with this global surge of capital equipment spending. As OEMs benchmark proactive companies like Intel who are investing in things like education as they train the future workforce to run the fabs of tomorrow, OEMs too will need to invest and act in a proactive method to better handle the problems at hand.