A shortage of computer chips is causing automakers to scale back production and raising questions over supplies to other sectors such as consumer electronics.
Here’s the latest:
- “Manufacturers are doing what they should,” said Taiwan Economy Minister Wang Mei-hua, as reported by Reuters. Taiwan, home to Taiwan Semiconductor Mfg. Co. Ltd. (NYSE: TSM), is a major source of the world’s chips. TSMC has almost a 56% market share among the world’s chip foundries. Wang said on Saturday that she has met with companies in recent weeks and that she received a letter Friday night from the White House about the problem. “We are helping as much as we can,” she said.
- Foxconn, another Taiwanese company, also is trying to calm nerves. The Apple supplier’s chairman, Liu Young-way, said on Saturday that the shortage will have only “limited impact” on Foxconn and its clients. “Since most of the customers we serve are large customers, they all have proper precautionary planning,” he said.
- A labor leader for Volkswagen AG (OTC: VWAGY) reportedly said the German automaker’s biggest plant, in Wolfsburg, is facing shortages of semiconductors and also battery cells. This is making it hard to meet demand for Golf models, including hybrids.
The shortage has hit automakers hardest as sales rebound from pandemic lockdowns faster than expected, at the same time that demand for electronic devices shot up and the effects of the pandemic hit supply chains.
The auto industry stands to lose $61 billion in sales this year, Bloomberg reported earlier.
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