Baku, April 4, AZERTAC
Spain plans to invest 11 billion euros ($12.4 billion) to develop microchips and semiconductors in a bid to modernize its tourism-dependent economy, according to Bloomberg.
“We want our country to be at the vanguard of industrial and technological progress,” Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said Monday in Madrid, without giving more details. He said the project will be approved soon by his cabinet.
The chips are key for Spain’s auto industry, which is Europe’s second-largest, representing about 10% of gross domestic product.
Policy makers across the continent are racing to put in place plans to invest in chips and cut reliance on imported technology. The European Union aims to become a key semiconductor maker with a goal of producing a fifth of the world’s supply by 2030.
With its 45 billion-euro Chips Act, the European Commission freed up public funding last month to produce chips considered “first of a kind” in Europe. Individual countries are acting too: Germany is looking to grant Intel Corp. 5 billion euros in public funds to help fund a 17-billion semiconductor plant, people familiar with the matter said last month.
Surging power prices, which propelled inflation to its highest in nearly four decades, have forced steelmakers to trim output and consumers to spend less. Rising living costs, meanwhile, have fanned discontent, with truckers staging a three-week protest that halted some companies’ operations and caused shortages of milk and other products.
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