France, Germany and 11 other European countries announced Monday their desire to join forces in electronic chips and semiconductors, considered a sovereignty issue against the United States and Asia. These EU states, which also include Spain, Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands, commit to jointly invest in these technologies “Across the entire value chain”, by mobilizing the main players in the sector with a view to “Future industrial alliance”, according to a joint statement.
The 13 signatories, who invite all the countries of the European Union to join them, also intend to work to establish common standards for secure electronic technologies. The objective is “To establish advanced European capabilities in the design and production of chips”, they explained. Semiconductors are already essential in everyday objects such as cars and mobile phones. They play a role “Central to industrial competitiveness” in the digital age, underlined the signatory states.
A market valued at 440 billion euros
But Europe is increasingly dependent on imports from the United States or Asian countries. It only owns 10% of a global semiconductor market valued at 440 billion euros. ” We need to strengthen Europe’s capacity to develop next generation processors and semiconductors ”, underlined the 13 signatories who hope to be able to mobilize part of the funds of the European recovery plan. It is expected that 20% of this plan will be devoted to digital technologies, or up to 145 billion euros over the next three years.
The cooperation plans to “Pooling investments and coordinating the actions of public and private actors”. It is ” create synergies between national research initiatives (…) and ensure a coherent European approach on a sufficient scale ”. The European Commissioner in charge of the Internal Market and Digital, Thierry Breton, welcomed “An important leap forward”. This initiative “Will lay the foundations for an industrial alliance”, he said in a statement. ” A collective approach can help us capitalize on our strengths and seize new opportunities as advanced microchips are increasingly important for Europe’s digital sovereignty and its industrial strategy ”, added Breton.