SEMI Commends Introduction of Advanced Manufacturing Legislation

SEMI Commends Introduction of Advanced Manufacturing Legislation

By Jamie Girard, senior director, SEMI Americas Public Policy

Recognizing the important role that advanced manufacturing plays in the US, SEMI has announced its strong support for newly introduced legislation aimed at bolstering domestic advanced manufacturing competitiveness. The bipartisan “Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act,” was introduced in early August by U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) with companion legislation in the House of Representatives being introduced by Congressman Tom Reed (R-NY-23) and Congressman Joseph Kennedy (D-MA-4).  The bill would establish a Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NMI) to position the United States as the global leader in advanced manufacturing. 

“This is the kind of industry-led solution that we see as being the most effective way to jump start more advanced manufacturing in the U.S.,” said SEMI president and CEO Denny McGuirk.  “With government and academia as partners, and with industry as a leader, we think that some great things can be achieved to address the most difficult challenges in creating breakthroughs in advanced manufacturing.”

The program is designed to bring together industry, universities and community colleges, federal agencies and all levels of government to accelerate manufacturing innovation in technologies with commercial applications. It would establish public-private institutes to leverage resources to bridge the gap between basic research and product development.

“Our industry commends Senators Brown and Blunt as well as Representatives Reed and Kennedy for their leadership on this issue,” continued McGuirk.  “This is a clear case where these leaders have seen a need, and put politics aside to come up with a common sense, ‘all-hands-on-deck’ solution to promote more advanced manufacturing in the U.S., and create the jobs that go along with it.”

With the many technological challenges being faced by SEMI members, the support of such a program could help to level the playing field with incentives being offered by foreign governments to promote more semiconductor equipment manufacturing outside of the U.S.  Impressive goals and financial contributions from countries like China, Korea, Taiwan, and the EU have been highly publicized recently, with the agenda of promoting semiconductor manufacturing.  The EU’s 10/100/20 campaign to bring public and private funds together to increase IC output in Europe to 20 percent of the world’s total is especially ambitious, and something that the U.S. government must take seriously.

While the total cost of the transition to 450mm is still largely unknown, using a system like the NMI to leverage federal dollars and industry cooperation would certainly help to reduce the cost, and perhaps even bring the products to market more quickly.  Work currently being done by the G450C at the Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering in Albany, New York, presents a compelling model to show the U.S. government the kind of work that can be accomplished when industry, academia, and government work together to focus on a common goal.

Such legislation is only one example of the kinds of services that SEMI provides to its members through its public policy and advocacy work in Washington, D.C.  A full time staff advocates on a wide variety of public policy issues on behalf of SEMI members and their interests.  If you would more information on the public policy work done by SEMI, please feel free to contact Jamie Girard, senior director, SEMI Americas Public Policy, at jgirard@semi.org.

September 3, 2013