The SEMI 300mm Fab Outlook to 2024 shows the chip industry adding at least 38 new 300mm volume fabs from 2020 to 2024
300mm fab investments in 2020 will grow by 13 per cent year-over-year (YoY) to eclipse the previous record high set in 2018 and log another banner year for the semiconductor industry in 2023, SEMI reported in its 300mm Fab Outlook to 2024. The COVID-19 pandemic has sparked the 2020 surge in fab spending by accelerating digital transformations worldwide, and the increase is expected to stretch into 2021.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating a digital transformation sweeping across nearly every industry imaginable to reshape the way we work and live. The projected record spending and 38 new fabs reinforce the role of semiconductors as the bedrock of leading-edge technologies that are driving this transformation and promise to help solve some of the world’s greatest challenges,” said Ajit Manocha, SEMI president and CEO.
Rising demand for cloud services, servers, laptops, gaming and healthcare technology
Powering the growth, as per SEMI, is rising demand for cloud services, servers, laptops, gaming and healthcare technology. Fast-evolving technologies such as 5G, Internet of Things (IoT), automotive, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning that continue to fuel demand for greater connectivity, large data centers and big data are also behind the increase.
Growth in semiconductor fab investments will continue in 2021 but at a slower rate of four per cent YoY. Mirroring previous industry cycles, the report also predicts a mild slowdown in 2022 and another slight downturn in 2024 following a $70 billion record high in 2023.
The SEMI 300mm Fab Outlook to 2024 shows the chip industry adding at least 38 new 300mm volume fabs from 2020 to 2024, a conservative projection that does not factor in low-probability or rumored fab projects. During the same period, per-month fab capacity will grow by about 1.8 million wafers to reach over 7 million.
Under a high-probability project forecast, the industry will add at least 38 new 300mm volume fabs from 2019 to 2024. Taiwan will add 11 volume fabs and China eight to account for half of the total. The chip industry will command 161 300mm volume fabs by 2024.
The biggest regional spenders will be Korea, with investments between US$15 billion and US$19 billion, followed by Taiwan, which will pour between US$14 billion and US$17 billion into 300mm fabs, and then China, with between US$11 billion and $13 billion in investments.