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Spend on new fab equipment to hit $100bn in 2022

Global semiconductor equipment investments for front end fabs in 2022 are expected to reach nearly US$100bn as the industry looks to meet soaring demand for electronics after topping a projected $90bn this year.

Both figures are records, according to SEMI, which reported the figures in its latest World Fab Forecast report.

The new fab equipment spending records will mark a rare three consecutive years of growth that began back in 2020, bucking the historical cyclical trend of a one- or two-year expansion followed by a year or two of tepid growth or declines. The semiconductor industry last saw more than two consecutive years of growth in the mid-1990s.

The foundry sector will account for the bulk of fab equipment investments in 2022, with more than $44bn in spending, followed by the memory sector at over $38bn. Both DRAM and NAND also show large increases in 2022 with jumps in spending to $17bn and $21bn, respectively. Micro/MPU investments will reach approximately $9bn, discrete/power $3bn, analogue $2bn, and other devices approximately $2bn next year.

Regionally in 2022, Korea will lead in fab equipment spending at $30bn, followed by Taiwan at $26bn, and mainland China at nearly $17bn. Japan will take the fourth spot with almost $9bn in fab equipment spending, while Europe/Mideast will be in fifth place at $8bn - the region is expected to post standout year-over-year percentage growth of 74% in 2022.

In the Americas and Southeast Asia, spending is projected to reach more than $6bn and $2bn, respectively.

The World Fab Forecast report lists 1,417 facilities and lines globally, including 129 facilities and lines starting volume production in 2021 and beyond.

Author
Neil Tyler

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