Japan has put together a joint public-private sector R&D initiative in which TSMC will bear around half the project's cost of about 37 billion yen (about US$337 million). It is thought the R&D project is expected to be preparatory to – and in support of – a TSMC advanced packaging facility to be located in Japan.
Under the current plan a trial facility is to be built at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, in Tsukuba, Ibaraki Prefecture, Nikkei said. Construction could start this summer with R&D work to begin as early as 2022, the report added.
Among the companies listed as involved are: Ibiden, Asahi Kasei, Shin-Etsu Chemical, Nagase & Co., and Shibaura Mechatronics.
Japan had previously expressed concern about its lack of leading-edge semiconductor manufacturing capacity and had been courting TSMC to build a leading-edge wafer fab (see Now Japan wants a domestic TSMC fab ). But TSMC, which was planning a multi-billion dollar wafer fab campus in Arizona, declined.
Instead TSMC suggested it could collaborate with Japanese engineering companies on advanced packaging, which is set to acquire increased importance in the semiconductor supply chain. TSMC has already committed to spending $10 billion on a packaging facility in Miaoli, northern Taiwan (see Chiplet-savvy TSMC to build $10 billion assembly and test plant ).
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