China's chip market booms as global sales strength continues

April 05, 2021 // By Peter Clarke
China's chip market booms as global sales strength continues
The chip market in China exhibited an 18.9 percent jump in February, according to data gathered by World Semiconductor Trade Statistics and reported by the Semiconductor Industry Association.

All regions exhibited annual growth ranging from 6.8 percent in Europe and 7.6 percent in Japan up to 18.6 percent by Asia-Pacific region including China. The global chip market therefore grew 14.7 percent

The three-month averaged sales for Europe was $3.482 billion slightly ahead of Japan's market of $3.166 billion. China's three-month average for the market in February was $13.735 billion. Remarkably China's year-on-year growth went from 4.4 percent growth in December to 12.4 percent in January and on to 18.9 percent in February. This may reflect comparison to suppressed activity in China in the early part of 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

We expect to see these higher figures to abate in China and ripple through to other geographic regions.

The three-month average of worldwide sales of semiconductors in January was US$39.558 billion, an increase of 14.7 percent over the equivalent figure in 2020.

Sensors, discretes and MOS microcomponents were the top drivers of February sales in Europe, according to ESIA. Sales for these product categories grew by 4.2, 3.9, and 2.7 percent respectively.

Three-month average of chip sales by geographic region for February and January 2021. Source: SIA/WSTS.

"Global semiconductor sales during the first two months of the year have outpaced sales from early in 2020, when the pandemic began to spread in parts of the world,” said John Neuffer, CEO of the SIA, in a statement. "Sales into the China market saw the largest year-to-year growth, largely because sales there were down substantially early last year."

Monthly data is given by the SIA as a three-month average although the source of the data, the WSTS, tracks actual monthly data. The SIA and other regional semiconductor industry bodies opt to use averaged data because it evens out the actual data that typically shows troughs at the beginnings of quarters and peaks at the ends of quarters.

Related links and articles:

News articles:

Europe left behind as chip market takes-off

Pace of chip market growth slows in China

V-shaped pandemic sets up chip shortages, rising prices in 2021

Europe's chip market missed out on annual growth in November

Volkswagen faces massive chip shortages

Covid effect drives global chip sales up 6 percent in October

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