TAIPEI (TAIWAN) – The United States thanked Taiwan for their help to resolve an auto chip shortage that has snarled production.
“The US side thanked us for our help on this,” Taiwan Economy Minister Wang Mei-hua told reporters after a high-level meeting. “But there was no discussion on prioritising the making of these chips,” she added.
Mei said the focus of the talks was not on auto chips and the issue of whether to prioritise their production was not brought up.
Car factories around the world are shutting assembly lines because of the chip shortages, which in some cases have been exacerbated by the former US administration’s actions against Chinese chip factories. The auto chip shortage has affected Volkswagen AG, Ford Motor Co, Subaru Corp, Toyota Motor Corp, Nissan Motor Co Ltd, Fiat Chrysler and other car makers.
Taiwan, which is home to tech firms like Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (TSMC), the world’s largest contract chip maker, has been at the centre of efforts to resolve the shortage.
The closed-door event, joined by the Taiwan minister and what she described as “very senior U.S. officials”, is the first announced high-level exchange between Taiwan and the Biden administration, which took office on Jan. 20.
The State Department said last week that Deputy Assistant Secretary for Trade Policy and Negotiations Matt Murray would take part.
Wang said TSMC also discussed its planned new $12 billion plant in the US state of Arizona, although she did not give details.