It is expected that Taiwan will be overtaking South Korea in the near future as the largest market for semiconductor equipment, with an anticipated purchase of more than the US $12bn this year, according to Semiconductor Equipment Materials International, which is a global industry association of semiconductor equipment and material suppliers.
Because of the slow growth of the industry, the sales of global semiconductor equipment are expected to drop this year by a yearly 18.4 percent to US$52.7bn.
Only the North American and Taiwanese markets are forecasted to witness growth, whereas those in China, South Korea, Japan, and Europe might drop, the association informed.
It predicts that the Taiwan market will grow 21.1 percent to US$12.31bn this year, surpassing South Korea as the biggest buyer of semiconductor equipment and materials around the world.
In the meantime, a source within Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., the largest contract chipmaker of the world, stated on Thursday that the firm’s capital spending on new equipment is expected to remain at US$10bn to US$11bn this year.
Vanguard International Semiconductor Corp., which is another renowned Taiwanese contract chip maker, will increase its spending to NT$11.7bn which is equivalent to US$376.96 million this year as it is increasing its production capacity with the acquisition of an 8-inch wafer fab in Singapore, according to the firm’s spokesperson.
DRAM maker Winbond Electronics Inc.’s will also be spending more capital on new equipment this year, with a yearly increase of nearly 30 percent to around NT$21.5bn, for the construction of a new factory in Kaohsiung, as informed by the company’s source.
SEMI has predicted that by 2020, the global semiconductor equipment market will rise by an annual 11.6 percent, largely on the back of higher spending by China on new projects.