EU Takes New Measures to Ensure Supply of Semiconductors
The European Union is seeking to ensure the supply of a vital strategic resource: semiconductors. Its new Chips Act regulation aims to increase Europe’s production of semiconductors from 10 percent of the world total to 20 percent by 2030, thus increasing the Continent’s strategic autonomy. Euractiv reported on April 18 that the EU’s main institutions have agreed to formally adopt the act.
The problem: Semiconductors do not make headlines on the average day. Yet they are a resource as valuable as oil and gas. Without them, our automated world, including mobile phones, cars, airplanes and power plants, would cease to function. After the shortages of early 2022, the European Commission identified that “the EU chips supply chain is increasingly vulnerable due to high entry cost, large subsidies in producing countries, escalating trade tensions, dependence on Asia for advanced chip manufacturing and on the United States for chip design tools.”
Some of Europe’s planned measures include:
- Creation of a European Semiconductor Board charged with evaluating and countering threats to the supply chain
- Increased investment in research and development of nanotechnology such as quantum chips
- Funding for large-scale semiconductor factories in Europe
New shortage? The world’s most advanced semiconductors are made in Taiwan and South Korea. Taiwan accounts for 92 percent of global production, according to a European Parliament briefing. Taiwan is currently threatened with a Chinese invasion. If it were invaded, a global shortage of semiconductors would likely follow. Even if factories are not destroyed, the simple presence of an active conflict would likely halt all exports of these products. China, meanwhile, aims to produce enough semiconductors to satisfy 70 percent of its domestic demand by 2025.
Forged in crisis: European founder Jean Monnet said that “Europe will be forged in crises, and will be the sum of the solutions adopted for those crises.” The semiconductor shortage of early 2022 was one crisis that could fall into this category. Monnet also said that Europe, as a unified state, “will not be made all at once” but rather “by concrete achievements, creating at first a de-facto solidarity.” His statement has proved true.
Along with the EU’s recent standardization of patents, the strengthening of Europe’s semiconductor production is another small but concrete step on the road to superpower status.
Long before Monnet’s prescient statements, Europe’s unification was described in detail by the Apostle John. Revelation 13 and 17 discuss an empire of 10 European nations, which will form the seventh and final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire. The Prophet Daniel also discussed this empire and described its leader as one who understands “dark sentences” (Daniel 8:23). In his article “Is KT zu Guttenberg About to Come to Power?”, Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry explained that the phrase “dark sentences” can refer to this leader’s ability to understand advanced technology and harness it to dominate the world scene. To become a superpower that rivals China and the United States, Europe must make use of cutting-edge technology. Semiconductors are a crucial part of that strategy.
Read Mr. Flurry’s article “Is KT zu Guttenberg About to Come to Power?” to learn more about the leader of this rising superpower.