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Intel receives $8.5B grant, largest domestic manufacturing investment yet

Library of Congress | PICRYL

Intel Corp., the American multinational corporation and technology company, is among the most prominent and largest semiconductor chip manufacturers in the world. On March 20, President Joe Biden awarded $8.5 billion in grants to Intel toward supporting the nation’s semiconductor production.

Intel is in line to receive up to $11 billion in loans under the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022. The act was signed into law by Biden with the aim of advancing local semiconductor research and production in the United States.

Lawmakers were prompted to pass the CHIPS and Science Act because it would strengthen American manufacturing, supply chain and national security, while promoting research and investment in the workforce.

The semiconductor industry is crucial in the United States. Semiconductors are the basis of electronics, automobiles and a vast swath of important infrastructure. They have allowed for improvements and advances to communications and many other fundamental systems of society, including the military, health care and transportation.

A sum of $50 billion, to be allocated in the form of direct funding, federal loans and loan guarantees, was placed under the act to support the development of the U.S. chip industry and reduce its dependence on foreign chips.

Today, less than 10% of chips are produced in the United States. 

“Nearly all manufacturing of leading-edge chips across the entire industry moved overseas to Asia years ago,” Biden said, according to The New York Times. The investment in Intel represents the lever for change for the government, marking the largest grant made yet to a chipmaker under the act.

“This investment will enable Intel to produce leading edge, the most sophisticated chips in the world that will power our economic and nation security,” U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said.

Intel plans to build two cutting-edge factories and modernize an existing facility in Arizona with the funds provided, as well as building a new site near Columbus, Ohio. 

Additionally, the company plans to use the federal funds to convert two Rio Rancho, New Mexico plants into state-of-the-art packaging facilities where the chips are assembled jointly while cutting expenses.

The CHIPS and Science Act is a good prospect for the United States in terms of chips production and development, but the act’s importance also lies in its creation of jobs.

According to authorities in the Bidden administration, the projects supported by the act are anticipated to generate over 10,000 manufacturing employment and over 20,000 construction jobs.

Intel is the fourth company to receive a federal award under the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022. The first three grants were allocated to GlobalFoundries, Microchip Technology and BAE Systems.

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