The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has extended the last date for submission of response to the Expression of Interest (EoI) for setting up/ expansion of existing semiconductor wafer/ device fabrication (FAB) facilities in India or acquisition of semiconductor FABs outside India till April 30, 2021. The EoI had been invited on December 15, 2020, and the last date was March 31, 2021.
India has already missed the opportunity to position itself as a hub for semiconductor fabrication in the early days, when South Korea, China and Taiwan took the lead. This was partly because fabs are capital-intensive and need fresh investments every three to five years just to address obsolescence.
Even though India has major strengths in chip design and in making the software that actually commands the processors to execute specific tasks, chip-manufacturing has never been the country’s strength. One reason is that the setting up of semiconductor fabrication units or fabs requires huge investments, as the technology becomes obsolete every two years, requiring fresh capital injections to upgrade the fab and stay in the game. Second, fabrication work is said to be only about 40 per cent of the total cost of a semiconductor chip. CT Bureau