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EU Chips Act move on: 7.5 billion euro investment support GF and ST’s new chip factory in France

The European chip industry is set to receive a major boost with the announcement of a new semiconductor manufacturing facility in France, jointly operated by GlobalFoundries (GF) and STMicroelectronics (STM). The project, which will receive significant financial support from the French government and the European Commission, aims to increase the production capacity and technological capabilities of the two chipmakers in the region.

The new facility will be located adjacent to STM’s existing 300mm facility in Crolles, near the Italian and Swiss borders. It will produce wafers at a size of 18-nanometers, which are used in automotive, internet-of-things and mobile applications. The facility is expected to reach full capacity by 2026, with up to 620,000 wafers per year of production.

The project represents an overall projected cost of 7.5 billion euro for capital expenditure, maintenance and ancillary costs. It will create around 1,000 new jobs and also help STM reach its target to boost revenue to above $20 billion.

The new facility will leverage GF’s market leading FDX technology and STM’s comprehensive technology roadmap, in alignment with customer demand which is expected to remain high for complex, advanced technologies over the next decades. The facility will also reinforce the European and French FD-SOI ecosystem, which is a key technology for low-power and high-performance applications.

The project is part of the European Chips Act, which aims to reduce the dependency on Asian suppliers and ease the global chip shortage that has affected various sectors, especially the automotive industry. The project also aligns with the objectives of the “France 2030” plan, which seeks to foster innovation and competitiveness in strategic sectors. The project has received approval from the European Commission, which deemed that the state aid was necessary and proportionate to achieve a common objective of strategic importance for Europe. The project has also received support from the French Minister of the Economy and Finance, Bruno Le Maire, who praised the partnership between GF and STM as a “historic agreement” for the French and European semiconductor industry.

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