The Japanese authorities are interested in organizing advanced semiconductor production in the country and therefore do not skimp on targeted subsidies when supporting foreign companies. American Micron Technology could get $1.5 billion in support if it organizes production of DRAM memory chips using EUV lithography in Japan.
As explained BloombergThe modernization project for Micron’s existing Hiroshima facility is unique in that it enables the installation of ultra-hard ultraviolet (EUV) lithography (EUV) equipment for the first time in the country. The necessary subsidies could be announced as early as this week when Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and other Japanese officials met with a delegation of foreign companies in Tokyo today.
This delegation also included representatives from Micron Technology, accompanied by the heads of Intel, IBM and Applied Materials – American companies with advanced lithography technologies. IBM will help Japanese consortium Rapidus mass-produce 2nm chips in the country by 2027. Among the Asian chip manufacturers, the bosses of TSMC and Samsung Electronics are invited to Japan for talks. The latter is also said to be vying for subsidies to be used to build a pilot line for packaging memory chips in Japan.
For Micron, expanding production in Japan could be some sort of compensation for the threatened ban on memory sales in China, as China’s authorities recently launched an investigation into Micron products suspected of containing threats to the information security. Micron doesn’t have any operations in China, it manufactures memory in the US, Taiwan, Singapore and Japan, but the Chinese market generates 11% of its sales. At the end of this week, the Japanese Prime Minister will also meet with colleagues from the G7 countries, and the question of expanding cooperation with the American company Micron Technology could be on the agenda.
Since 2013, Micron has invested more than $13 billion in its business in Japan. From 2024, the company wants to establish the production of RAM chips here using EUV lithography. Profile equipment for the Hiroshima plant is supplied by both Japan’s Tokyo Electron and Dutch ASML. In addition to its own capital, Micron can not only attract grants from the Japanese central authorities, but also funds from the Hiroshima city budget for the project.