Paul van Gerven
4 February 2021

German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier expects state-supported European calls for semiconductor projects to trigger investments of up to 50 billion euros, Reuters reports. Speaking to his French counterpart Bruno Le Maire in a panel discussion, Altmaier said that he’s counting on at least a “middle-range double-digit amount” in billions of euros. State subsidies would account for 20-40 percent of investments.

Peter Altmaier
Peter Altmaier. Credit: BPA/Steffen Kugler

Altmaier and Le Maire talked about the so-called Important Project of Common European Interest for microelectronics. IPCEIs are constructs set up by the European Commission that relax state-aid rules for strategic endeavors. Germany and France have initiated similar projects in other sectors such as battery cells, cloud computing and artificial intelligence to make Europe less dependent on producers and tech companies from the United States and China.

Previously, nineteen EU member states called for a rather ambitious plan to collaborate on “strengthening Europe’s capacity to develop the next generation of processors and semiconductors. This includes chips and embedded systems that offer the best performance for specific applications across a wide range of sectors as well as leading-edge manufacturing progressively advancing towards 2nm nodes for processor technology.”