Taiwan Begins Recovery From Quake as TSMC Resumes Production

Taiwan Begins Recovery From Quake as TSMC Resumes Production - Merchant Navy Info - News

Taiwan’s semiconductor industry resumed operations. Rescue workers worked to free injured and trapped residents. As the island began to recover from its worst Quake in 25 years. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd. A leading manufacturer of advanced chips for Apple. And Nvidia announced it would resume production within 24 hours after evacuating employees and suspending operations. The company said there was no damage to its main chip manufacturing facilities. This statement was reinforced on Thursday. News that most operations had resumed from the Tainan Science Park, where many of these advanced chips are manufactured.

Taiwan’s technological advances appear to have caused damage and casualties. Relatively low after a magnitude 7.4 earthquake struck the island’s east coast early Wednesday morning. After the 1999 Quake that killed more than 2,400 people, the government revised building codes and other regulations. The full extent of the damage caused by this earthquake is not yet clear. But the latest statistics show that nine people died and more than 1,000 people were injured. As of Thursday afternoon, 642 people were still trapped or cut off. From the route due to road closures and debris, the government said.

Role in Economy

Taiwan plays a major role in the global economy as Taiwanese companies. Produce semiconductors that power technologies such as artificial intelligence, smartphones, and electric vehicles. Under TSMC’s leadership, domestic companies produce an estimated 80-90% of top-tier chips. Taiwan’s largest semiconductor maker said late Wednesday that it had restarted 70 to 80 percent. Of its machines within 10 hours of the earthquake. The most expensive piece of equipment is an extreme ultraviolet machine from ASML Holding NV. Which is used to develop his latest iPhone processors and his Nvidia chips for training AI models such as ChatGPT

TSMC said in a statement late Wednesday that “there is no damage to our critical tools. Including all of our extreme ultraviolet lithography tools.” A small number of tools were damaged at some facilities. However, the company said it is utilizing all available resources to ensure a complete recovery. Quake reminds 4% of the global GDP of risks to Taiwan. Smaller United Microelectronics Corporation also plans to resume normal operations. And deliveries and says the quake will not significantly impact its operations. UMC has shut down some machinery at some factories and evacuated some facilities. At its bases in  Hsinchu City and Tainan City. TSMC subsidiary Vanguard International Semiconductor Co. said it was restarting production in stages, with about 80% of its machines back in operation by noon Thursday. The island market was closed on Thursday as it was a public holiday.

Island Technology

Some of the island’s technology companies are still assessing damage from the earthquake, which destroyed dozens of buildings on the east side. Analysts at Barclays had warned that a production stoppage could disrupt production processes and require weeks of uninterrupted isolation in a vacuum. “Some high-end chips need to operate smoothly 24/7 for weeks in a vacuum,” analysts Bum Ki Son and Brian Tan wrote shortly after the quake.`Operation disruptions in northern Taiwan’s  industrial areas may impair production of some high-end chips.” However, damage assessments quickly turned optimistic. 

Analysts at Citigroup  said the impact on TSMC’s operations should be “manageable,” while analysts at Jefferies Financial Group said  downside risks should be “limited.“Fortunately, building regulations were completely revised after the disaster, and damage appears to be limited so far, even in the epicenter,” they wrote. Wu Yi-ming, professor of geosciences at National Taiwan University and team leader at the National Disaster Prevention Science and Technology Center, said the agency has developed a more sophisticated disaster response system in the past three to five years. This was very important as the island is vulnerable to seismic activity. “Taiwan is developing these technologies, and we have an advantage,” Wu said, adding that it would be even more difficult in regions without a strong technology industry.

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