Biden to sign CHIPS act to help semiconductor manufacturers

The White House hopes to reduce US reliance on countries like China for parts needed to manufacture cutting-edge technology.

WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden is preparing to sign a bipartisan $280 billion bill to boost domestic high-tech manufacturing, part of his administration’s effort to make the U.S. more competitive with China.

Tuesday’s Rose Garden ceremony will be attended by lawmakers, union officials, local politicians and business leaders, the White House said, as the president looks to highlight new legislation that will incentivize investment in America’s semiconductor industry to reduce US dependency reduce overseas supply chains for critical, high-tech goods.

“We’re going to invest it in America,” Biden said on Friday. “We will make it in America. We will win the economic competition of 21st century America.”

The White House said Micron is announcing a $40 billion plan to boost domestic production of memory chips, and Qualcomm and GlobalFoundries are announcing a $4.2 billion expansion of a chip factory in upstate New York.

The bill would provide about $52 billion in grants and other incentives for the semiconductor industry, as well as a 25% tax credit for companies that build chip factories in the United States. Proponents say these incentives are necessary to compete with other nations that are also spending billions of dollars to entice manufacturers.

The pandemic has highlighted just how much the United States relies on foreign semiconductor manufacturers to provide the chips used in cars, computers, appliances and weapons systems. The Biden administration has warned lawmakers they must act before heading into the August recess to ensure companies invest in U.S. factories rather than build the plants elsewhere.

Overall, the law would increase the US deficit by about $79 billion over the next 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office. The bill also authorizes about $200 billion to boost high-tech research in the US over the coming decade. Congress must approve this funding as part of future spending bills, and the CBO has not included this money in its deficit forecast.

Critics have likened the spending to “corporate welfare,” saying the money should be spent on other priorities or not at all. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., said he doesn’t hear from people about the need to help voters talk to him about climate change, gun safety, protecting women’s right to an abortion and increasing welfare benefits, to name a few to name.

“Not too many people that I can remember — I’ve been all over this country — saying, ‘Bernie, you go back there and do the work, and you give billions and billions to hugely profitable companies that pay outrageous compensation packages to their CEOs Billions upon billions of dollars in corporate welfare,’” Sanders said. Biden to sign CHIPS act to help semiconductor manufacturers

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