back to article German finance minister says nein to more Intel subsidy cash

Questionmarks are being raised over Intel's planned chip factory in Germany after the country's finance minister said there is no more money available for further subsidies to help build it. The Santa Clara giant announced early last year that it had selected a site in Magdeburg in eastern Germany to build a new European "mega …

  1. codejunky Silver badge


    Why are the fabs mostly in Asia? Because its cheaper. Just glad the UK didnt join this bidding match to give away taxpayer money. Now if they would cut spending on other things

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Shocked?

      So true. Much better to pay £12 billion to one's chums for useless PPE. Trebles all round!!!

      1. codejunky Silver badge

        Re: Shocked?


        "Much better to pay £12 billion to one's chums for useless PPE."

        That doesnt sound any better either.

        1. IGotOut Silver badge

          Re: Shocked?


          Was that the sound of a jet fighter? Nope it's the statement flying over your head.

          1. codejunky Silver badge

            Re: Shocked?


            "Was that the sound of a jet fighter? Nope it's the statement flying over your head."

            Dont hurt yourself. Some on here think I am a tory supporter and that statement could be interpreted as such a response to my comment. I also have some seriously thick AC trolls who could mean to comment in such a way. So my simple clarification there should not hurt your head so much.

  2. iron Silver badge

    > €6.8 billion ($7.3 billion)

    I wonder what that is in real money? Oh for a good UK based IT site so I can kiss this US centric shite goodbye.

    1. Alex Stuart

      Those are the two most important currencies in the world. The sun has long since set on the Empire, I'm afraid.

      1. Jon 37

        But The Register was originally British. It was a site for a long time.

    2. Dr_N

      iron> I wonder what that is in real money?

      69,607,760,176.017 groats.

    3. Mockup1974 Bronze badge

      13.6 billion DM (Deutsche Mark)

  3. _Elvi_


    AMD was welcomed with open arms, and much BruHaHA ..

    Projects I was involved in for a refresh across the German Federal State managed services choose AMD kit over Intel ..

    ( At the time, AMD Processors sipped BTU's in direct comparison with Intel.. even though the Intel CPU completed the job "faster" than AMD.. AMD processors were manufactured within Germany's borders; so it made financial sense IMHO )

    It would be interesting to be fully plugged in to that decision not to subsidize a Intel FAB.

    1. Lars Silver badge

      Re: AMD


      It's not about no subsidy, it's about putting a cap on it. But we will see how it goes, eventually.

      1. Mark 65

        Re: AMD

        I wish them the best of luck trying to squeeze the Germans for extra money. If they said they'd give 6.8 large then that's what you're getting. If costs have risen because you're delaying then they'll view that as your inefficiency and tough shit. There's clearly other players they can subsidise, TSMC seems like a reasonable horse to back.

  4. ratonahat

    Japan is paying massive subsidies

    Japan just paid $4b to TSMC for their $6b investment. Basically they are matching almost half of the cost. Intel should invest in Japan or may be Korea instead. Both governments pay massive subsidies and there is no shortage of talents.

    1. DS999 Silver badge

      Re: Japan is paying massive subsidies

      There's a reason Japan has to pay those subsidies - operating fabs there is more expensive due to more frequent earthquakes. Intel always sites in places (Oregon, Arizona, Ireland, soon Ohio and maybe Germany) where that's not an issue.

      When an earthquake occurs all in process wafers are lost. Today that's like three months worth, and before long will be four months worth. That's enough to turn a profit to a loss even in an otherwise very profitable foundry.

  5. ratonahat

    “When an earthquake occurs all in process wafers are lost. Today that's like three months worth, and before long will be four months worth.”

    That’s BS and pure fiction. All the important fab tools have vibration isolation system. Taiwan is also earthquake prone. That doesn’t stop TSMC to build factories in Taiwan. Are you going to argue that TSMC isn’t cost competitive with Intel because Intel makes chips in Arizona and Oregon while TSMC makes chips mostly in earthquake prone Taiwan?

    Until CHIPS act, the US and European governments weren’t providing any direct subsidy. During this time asian countries like Taiwan, Japan, and Korea were providing massive subsidies. Even China is trying that now. All these asian countries now have built an ecosystem around semiconductor supply chain. Almost all the major chemical suppliers for semiconductor equipment (ASML is a major outlier) and chemicals are from Asian countries, especially Japan. Having the whole ecosystem in close proximity makes it cheaper to produce cutting edge chips in that region. Additionally, their massive subsidies makes it an even more no brainer.

    That’s exactly why TSMC and Samsung doesn’t want to produce cutting edge fab tech in US and Europe. They only want to make old gen nodes here and even that is contingent upon matching massive subsidies.

    I think Intel eventually would just stop going against the flow. It just doesn’t make sense to make advance semiconductors in Europe. With the rise of energy cost and unwillingness to match or exceed Asian rivals in terms of subsidies, I don’t see how Europe can be a competitive place for cutting edge fabs. I know it’s sad but it’s the reality.

    1. LogicGate Silver badge

      Most of european (automotive / machine) industry does not need cutting edge fabs. What is needed are automotive certified ICs, GAN and SIC power modules etc.

      Covid and the Chinese handling of it has shown Europe that the losses created by supply chain issues most likely outweigh the added cost of having a reliable manufacturing base available. I see the same happening with pharmaseutic production as well.

      Let the latest and greatest cell-phone processor be made where cell phones are made.. These are not the chips that we are looking for...

      Yes.. Automotive, Aerospace and Defence will become more and more reliant of machine "intelligence", and this will lead to a significan need for processing power.. but this is not all there is, and securing sources for other components is just as important.

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