Japan asks chip equipment makers to help restore Renesas’ production facilities

Following a chip plant owned by Renesas Electronic Corp catching fire earlier this month, Japan asked a few Taiwanese manufacturers to cooperate in alternative production of semiconductors, said industry minister Hiroshi Kajiyama.

“We are in communication with several manufacturing equipment makers (in Taiwan) to speed up procurement,” said Kajiyama after attending a cabinet meeting. He went on to add, “The ministry will also work together for a swift recovery by using all possible means”.

Renesas has nearly 30% share of the global microcontroller market used in cars. Initially it had said 11 machines were damaged in the fire. On Tuesday, it said 23 machines need to be replaced.

At a news conference, Renesas’ CEO Hidetoshi Shibata said “production at the plant would resume within a month, recovery to pre-fire levels was expected to take 100 to 120 days from the incident” and added, “any short-term shipment of alternative chip production was impossible and the company would recuperate losses in the six months ending December.”

An extension in outage could add to a global shortage of chips which is disrupting some production of cars and electronic devices.

According to an official, the Japanese government has called on chip equipment makers to help restore Renesas’ production facilities, with bureaucrats contacting companies in Japan and overseas to request them to provide parts and machinery to the company.



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