German French fries factory breaks ground in ‘major step forward’ for EU

Germany’s Infineon has broken ground on its new €5 billion semiconductor plant in Dresden less than six months after announcing the project.

Speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony yesterday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen hailed the construction as a “great step forward” towards the goal to increase its market share in semiconductors.

Europe is currently struggling to become less dependent on foreign imports of semiconductor chips from China, Taiwan and South Korea, among others. “These are regions where tensions could flare up at any time,” he said von der Leyen, a nod to the current tensions between Beijing and Taipei. “The slightest disruption to trade would immediately hit Europe’s strong industrial base and our internal market hard.”

The bloc believes boosting domestic production of the chips – essential components in everything from cars to smartphones – will ease the supply shortages that have arisen teased many of the EU’s vital technology sectors in the past two years.

Under the EU chip law, who got the green light last month, the bloc is mobilizing 43 billion euros for this double its market share in semiconductors from 10% to 20% by 2030. “The capacity will have to be quadrupled, and that is only possible with companies like Infineon,” said von der Leyen.

“With this groundbreaking launch, Infineon is launching an important contribution to the green and digital transformation of our society,” said Jochen Hanebeck, CEO of Infineon, at the ceremony on Tuesday. “Global demand for semiconductors will grow strongly and sustainably given the high demand for renewable energy, data centers and electromobility.”