Leading semiconductor companies in 2030: No more stability and prosperity

According to Sun Tzu’s “Art of War,” a good fighter relies more on his or her skill to seize opportunities than on the efforts of other people to win the battle. Even while a small nation cannot influence the outcome of the game, it can nevertheless seize the opportunity and adapt.

The US government dealt more blows to China’s semiconductor ambitions just before the Chinese Communist Party’s congress met to confirm Xi Jinping’s reelection. These blows included a ban on the export of advanced machinery and technology to China, a ban on the export of AI and supercomputer chips to China, and a ban on US experts working for China.

Taiwan’s robust semiconductor sector is not only in the front lines of the battles between the two countries but also in the center of the storm as US-China ties worsen into outright hostility. The industrial landscape is evolving as a result of shifting geopolitics. The G2 gap has no room for bilateral ties, and the peace and prosperity we have taken for granted are already far away. The US now places China concerns first in its national agenda.

Economic powerhouses may be able to limit the harm caused by the US-China confrontations, but for the smaller ones that are compelled to choose a side or remain neutral, this may end up being a matter of life and death once they are dragged into the eye of the storm. However, this can also present a chance for them to evolve and improve. This collection of essays addresses the US-China trade war while concentrating on the challenges that Taiwan, Japan, Korea, ASEAN, India, and other growing Asian nations must overcome in their industrial policies and ICT supply chains. Exists opportunity for these nations to develop and advance besides adhering to the two powers?

The US-China conflict will persist, decentralized production ecosystems will emerge, South Korea will experience increased fiscal pressure, Japan’s economy will fall to fifth place in the world rankings, the EU will seek greater cooperation with East Asian nations in semiconductor manufacturing, and India, which will overtake the US and China as the third-largest country in terms of GDP by 2030, won’t miss the opportunity. Taiwan’s technology sector will eventually be “internationally owned,” or at the very least, become a significant partner that other nations will aspire to collaborate with.

The state of the Chinese economy is a more significant one. Will China attempt a violent reunification of Taiwan? Will the West make an all-out effort to limit China, or will it keep some doors open for a nation with 1.4 billion people?

The US has given TSMC and Samsung exemptions from its semiconductor limitations, the US dollar is strong, and it is selling Taiwan weaponry. However, the US government has made it known that it will investigate any potential infringements of the patents of TSMC, Samsung, and Qualcomm. In the event that they were “found guilty” of infringement, how should TSMC and Samsung respond?

The semiconductor industry is a capital- and technology-intensive one that depends on consumer confidence and ecosystem support. Threatening to start a new Cold Conflict or possibly a hot war, the power struggle might split the world in two. My birth year is 1958, the year of the Second Taiwan Strait Crisis. Thankfully, the following six decades proved to be “quiet,” enabling us to build a robust economy. Additionally, the early 1970s semiconductor boom delivered prosperity to Taiwan and South Korea for 50 years.

I sincerely hope that no one will lose in this conflict, and that the nation that has been able to withstand the worst conditions for the longest period of time would emerge victorious. High stakes, high rewards, and potentially hazardous situations may still provide growing nations with the most profitable advantages.

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