U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi recently visited Taiwan. She may have left Taiwan but has cast a spotlight on the island’s critical role in the global chip supply chain and on the world’s biggest chipmaker TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company).
Pelosi’s visit is being called controversial because it angered Beijing to see Pelosi meet with TSMC Chairman Mark Liu. The meeting between Pelosi and TSMC is a sign of how critically important semiconductors are to U.S national security and the integral role that the company plays in making the most advanced chips.
A semiconductor is an important part of today’s advanced technology as it is used in many gadgets, from our smartphones to cars and refrigerators. The manufacturing of semiconductors has also become a key part of the U.S. and China in the past few years, which has resulted in a rivalry. More recently, the shortage of semiconductors has spurred the U.S. to try to catch up with Asia and maintain a lead over China in the semiconductor industry.
“Taiwan’s unresolved diplomatic status will remain a source of intense geopolitical uncertainty. Even Pelosi’s trip underlines how important Taiwan is for both countries,” Reema Bhattacharya, head of Asia research at Verisk Maplecroft, said on Wednesday in an interview.
The meeting between Pelosi and TSMC concluded that the U.S can’t do it alone and will require collaboration with Asian companies that dominate the most cutting-edge chips.
TSMC is the world’s semiconductor chipmaker. It manufactures chips with different designs. The company has a long list of clients, such as Apple and Nvidia, some of the world’s biggest companies.
Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan has affected many unions, such as China and Beijing. These countries do not want to give their control over the technology to other countries like Taiwan and the U.S.
The U.S. is looking to set up a semiconductor manufacturing unit and also looked to convince other companies to set up shops on its soil. This demonstrates that the U.S wants to lead China in producing and delivering semiconductors.