Economy

U.S. Awards Chip Supplier $162 Million to Bolster Critical Industries

The Biden administration on Thursday announced plans to provide $162 million in federal grants to Microchip Technology, an Arizona-based semiconductor company that supplies the automotive, defense and other industries.

The agreement is the second award announced under a new program intended to help ensure that American companies that rely on semiconductors have a stable supply. Last month, the Biden administration announced a $35 million grant for BAE Systems, a defense contractor.

The investment will enable Microchip to increase its production of semiconductors that are used in cars, airplanes, appliances, medical devices and military products. The administration said it expected the award to create more than 700 jobs in construction and manufacturing.

“Today’s announcement with Microchip is a meaningful step in our efforts to bolster the supply chain for legacy semiconductors that are in everything from cars to washing machines to missiles,” Commerce Secretary Gina M. Raimondo said in a statement.

Microchip plans to use $90 million to modernize and expand a facility in Colorado Springs and $72 million to expand a facility in Gresham, Ore. The administration said the funding would help Microchip triple its output at the two sites and decrease the company’s reliance on foreign facilities to help make its products.

The company’s chips aren’t cutting-edge but are key components of nearly every military and space program. Microchip is one of the largest suppliers of semiconductors to the defense industrial base and a designated trusted foundry for the military. It also plays a crucial role in industries that are important for the national economy, U.S. officials said.

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