Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Warner Introduces Bill to Encourage More U.S.-Made Semiconductors

Circuit Board (Pexels/Jeremy Waterhouse)

NATIONWIDE — U.S. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) has introduced a bipartisan bill designed to encourage companies to manufacture semiconductors in the United States.

Semiconductors are materials that have electrical conductivity value falling between that of a metal conductor and an insulator, such as most ceramics. Semiconductors are a vital component in all electronic devices.

The bill, titled the Facilitating American-Built Semiconductors (FABS) Act, would create a 25 percent tax credit to attract companies to bring their semiconductor production to domestic facilities. The credit would also go towards the the manufacturing of specialized equipment for the conductors as well as the construction of manufacturing facilities.

Having more semiconductors manufactured in country would bolster the nation’s technology supply chain while also creating more jobs across the country.

According to a press release from Warner’s office, the United States produces 12 percent of the world’s semiconductors, which is a sharp decrease from the 37 percent the nation was producing in 1990.

Currently, East Asia is responsible for 75 percent of the world’s semiconductor manufacturing. As much as 70 percent of the cost difference for producing semiconductors overseas is driven by foreign subsidies, rather than comparative advantages. The bill would help close that gap by incentivizing production of semiconductors in the United States.

“There’s bipartisan consensus that the U.S. must bolster investments in emerging technologies – like semiconductors – to be better positioned to compete against China’s tech dominance. However, the reality is that the U.S. heavily relies on semiconductor manufacturing abroad, which not only leaves our supply chains vulnerable but it also means we’re offshoring too many good-paying jobs,” Warner said in the press release. “That’s why I joined my colleagues on this bipartisan bill, which will build on the record $52 billion investment included in the bipartisan United States Innovation and Competition Act, by incentivizing companies to bring these critical manufacturing facilities back to the U.S. in order to create more job opportunities in our communities and strengthen our national security.”

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