South Korea government, Samsung team up for self-sufficiency after Japan export curbs on chip material


By Joyce Lee and Hyunjoo Jin
DAEJEON, South Korea (Reuters) – When the South Korea government unveiled an expanded semiconductor material testing facility last month, the centrepiece was a towering white machine given by Samsung Electronics <005930.KS> at a fraction of its market price.
The facility, aimed at motivating local suppliers to make and test sophisticated chipmaking materials like photoresist, comes as South Korea pushes for self-sufficiency after Japan last year imposed export curbs on high-tech chip materials.

While industry sources warn Korea has a long way to go to achieve this, the need for self-reliance in chip technology has become more critical with the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic and U.S.-China tensions threatening to accelerate supply chain shifts.

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