Intel’s new CEO, Pat Gelsinger, was among a group of U.S. corporate leaders who met yesterday with President Biden to address the chip shortage.
Shortly after the meeting, Gelsinger was interviewed by CNBC TechCheck. Here are his top 5 takeaways:
1) Government funding for the “Chips Act” (short for Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors) is essential. “We’ve seen the motivation,” Gelsinger said. “Now it’s time to get that funded.”
2) More chipmakers are needed, and in more countries. “We have to start building more capacity across the world,” Gelsinger said. “We’ve become way too dependent on a too small of a footprint in Asia. We need a more balanced supply chain globally.”
3) The U.S. government should provide incentives for American companies to build fab plants in the U.S. “We want to have the R&D, the research, the ownership of the technology — and not just the manufacturing — by American companies on American soil," he said. "That’s what we mean by a more balanced footprint across the world.”
4) The global pandemic has accelerated the centrality of tech. “Leadership in semiconductors is foundational for the digital lives that we’re all experiencing,” Gelsinger said. “We were on this path where more of our lives are becoming digital, and COVID just accelerated that dramatically."
5) The U.S. urgently needs to change course. “Twenty-plus years ago, the U.S. was at 37% of global [chip] supply. Today we’re at 12% — and headed to less than 10%. This is the most critical technology, and we’re going to lose control? We must act now….Our ‘moon shot’ should be that a third of semiconductors should be back on American soil, by American companies.”