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Japan Prime Minister Encourages Increased Investment from Global Chipmakers Ahead of G7 Summit

Japan’s Prime Minister, Fumio Kishida, expressed his enthusiasm for increased investment from global chipmakers in Japan, as the country seeks to revitalize its chip sector. This statement came after a meeting with top executives on Thursday ahead of the Group of Seven (G7) summit.

With China’s chip and advanced technology development becoming a focal point, the United States has been urging its allies to counter China’s dominance in this area. The escalating tensions between Taiwan, the United States, and China have posed significant challenges to the semiconductor industry, as Taiwan plays a crucial role in chip production for various industries.

During the meeting, Prime Minister Kishida highlighted the importance of stabilizing supply chains, which will be a key topic of discussion at the G7 summit in Hiroshima. He welcomed the positive attitude of executives from companies like Micron Technology Inc, Intel Corp, and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) towards investment in Japan. Kishida expressed his desire for the government to support the semiconductor industry and expand direct investment in Japan.

To strengthen semiconductor supply chains, Kishida aimed to foster cooperation among industry players. Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura announced that Japan would allocate 1.3 trillion yen ($9.63 billion) from the previous fiscal year’s supplementary budget to support its chip business.

Kumamoto prefecture in southwestern Japan has emerged as a significant hub for tech investment, attracting companies like TSMC and Fujifilm Holdings Corp. Micron also announced plans to bring extreme ultraviolet (EUV) technology to Japan, making it the first semiconductor company to do so. With Japanese government support, Micron expects to invest up to 500 billion yen, while financial incentives totaling about 200 billion yen have been reported by Bloomberg News.

Regarding subsidies for Micron, an industry ministry official stated that no decision had been made yet, but one would be determined as soon as possible.

The G7 summit will take place from Friday to Sunday, with Prime Minister Kishida scheduled to meet U.S. President Joe Biden later on Thursday. Ahead of the summit, public support for Kishida has been increasing, as indicated by a Jiji poll that showed approval for his cabinet surpassing disapproval for the first time in nine months.

(1 USD = 135.05 JPY)

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