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© SEMI Business | March 22, 2022

Global fab equipment spending expected to hit $107B in 2022

The semiconductor industry's drive to expand and upgrade capacity is expected to push spending over USD 100 billion for first time, SEMI reports.

Global fab equipment spending for front-end facilities is expected to jump 18% YoY and reach a new all-time high of USD 107 billion in 2022. This would also mark a third consecutive year of growth following a 42% surge in 2021, SEMI states in its latest quarterly World Fab Forecast report.

“Crossing the $100 billion mark in spending on global fab equipment for the first time is a historic ​milestone for the semiconductor industry,” said Ajit Manocha, president and CEO of SEMI in a press release. “This ​significant achievement is a tribute to the relentless drive to add and upgrade capacity to address a diverse range of markets and emerging applications, solidifying expectations for long-term industry growth to enable electronics for the digital world.”

Sanjay Malhotra, vice president of Corporate Marketing and the Market Intelligence Team at SEMI, says that global semiconductor capacity is expected to maintain steady growth this year and in 2023.

“Global fab equipment spending is forecast to have another healthy year in 2023 and is expected to remain above the $100 billion mark,” Sanjay Malhotra, says.

Fab Equipment Spending by Region

Taiwan is – unsurprisingly – expected to lead fab equipment spending in 2022. SEMI says that Taiwan is expected to increase investments 56% YoY to USD 35 billion, followed by Korea at USD 26 billion, which is an increase of 9%, and China will spend USD 17.5 billion, a 30% drop from its peak last year. 

Europe/Mideast is forecast to log record high spending of USD 9.6 billion this year, and while comparatively smaller, this would represent a staggering growth of 248% YoY. Taiwan, Korea and Southeast Asia are also expected to register record high investments in 2022. In the Americas, the report shows fab equipment spending peaking at USD 9.8 billion by 2023.

Continued capacity expansion

SEMI says that data from its World Fab Forecast report shows that the global industry is increasing capacity by 8% this year, following an increase of 7% the year before. 

Capacity growth is expected to continue to increase, adding another 6% in 2023. The fab equipment industry last saw a YoY growth rate of 8% in 2010, when it topped 16 million wafers per month (200mm equivalents) – nearly half of the 29 million wafers per month (200mm equivalents) projected for 2023.

Over 83% of equipment spending in 2022 will stem from capacity increases at 150 fabs and production lines, a proportion expected to edge down to 81% next year as 122 known fabs and lines add capacity, the SEMI report continues.

As expected, the foundry sector – with a share of about 50% – will account for the bulk of equipment spending in 2022 and 2023, followed by memory at 35%. The two sectors also represent most of the capacity increases.

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September 29 2022 3:24 pm V20.8.40-1
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