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Japanese chip firms could invest $31 billion by 2029

Major firms such as Sony Group and Mitsubishi Electric are planning to spend USD 31 billion in CAPEX this decade to boost production of power devices and image sensors, says a Nikkei report.

Nikkei has studied the investment plans of Japan's eight major chipmakers for the fiscal periods 2021 to 2029. The companies are: Sony, Mitsubishi Electric, Rohm, Toshiba, Kioxia Holdings, Renesas, Rapidus and Fuji Electric.

It concluded they will increase their spend in power semiconductors, sensors and logic chips, which are all key to the development of boom sectors such as artificial intelligence, decarbonisation and electric vehicles.

Nikkei cites Sony Group as investing heavily in image sensors to meet demand  for smartphone cameras, autonomous driving and factory monitoring. The company has already set up a new facility at its site in Nagasaki prefecture and recently announced plans to build a plant in Kumamoto prefecture.

It also name-checked the moves by Toshiba, Mitsubishi Electric and Rohm to invest about 480 billion yen to increase production of silicon power and silicon carbide power devices. Mitsubishi Electric alone will increase its production capacity of silicon carbide power devices 5-fold in fiscal 2026 compared to fiscal 2022.

The investment will be welcomed by the Japanese government which is busy trying to reverse the sharp decline of Japan in the electronics space since the glory days of the 80s and 90s. Last year, reports said the government had assigned USD 13 billion to drive investment in its chip industry via a USD 59.8 billion bond sale. The state wants to triple sales of domestically produced semiconductors by 2030.


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June 13 2024 1:49 pm V22.4.55-2