Samsung unveils plan to invest $230bn in South Korean tech sector

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Samsung has announced plans to spend in excess of $230 billion on semiconductors over the next 20 years.

Part of a South Korean government plan for the private sector to invest $422 billion in the tech sector, including chips, batteries and displays, Samsung said that it is planning to build five more fabs.

“The economic battlefield, which recently began with chips, has expanded, countries are providing large-scale subsidies and tax support,” said President Yoon Suk Yeol, “we must support private investments to ensure further growth. The government must provide location, R&D, manpower, and tax support.”

The government will provide $20 billion for R&D over five years, $276 billion to develop chip packaging, and $77 billion  in electricity and water infrastructure for industry.

Samsung said that it plans to invest $46 billion in the next 10 years in regions outside Seoul to develop chip packaging, displays and battery technology. Over the next 20 years that investment is expected to exceed $230 billion and will be a crucial part of the government's push to develop a mega semiconductor hub in the country.

Under the government’s plans to encourage increased private sector investment, companies in high-tech industries will be offered incentives like expanded tax breaks and infrastructure support.

"The mega cluster will be the key base of our semiconductor ecosystem," South Korea's Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said in a statement.

The move by South Korea comes as a response to other major players, such as the US and EU, who are looking to boost onshore manufacturing in the semiconductor sector.

  • A chip plant that South Korea's Samsung is building in Taylor, Texas, will cost over $25 billion, up more than $8 billion from initial forecasts, according to reports. The information is not public and was supplied to Reuters by people close to the project. The increase in cost is said to be primarily due to inflation. Samsung announced its Taylor, Texas, plant in 2021 and it aims to make advanced chips for functions such as artificial intelligence, 5G and mobile phones.