Local chip fabs will give fillip to IPR creation
Localization policies will give support to Indian chipmakers
Hindustan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp, which has got an in-principle nod for setting up an electronic chip making unit, said the government's present policies especially the one giving preference to domestic manufacturers, will help chipmakers.
HSMC, founded by a team of Non Resident Indians (NRIs) of Silicon Valley, along with France-based ST Microelectronics and Silterra (Malaysia) is one of consortia that has secured the go-ahead to build the proposed Rs 252.5 billion fab unit.
Besides commercial vision, a strong "emotional connect" to India has driven HSMC and its partners to the country, Founder and Chairman Deven Verma said.
At present, there is no electronic chip manufacturing or semiconductor wafer fabrication plant in India. Over 90 per cent of the domestic electronic needs are met through imports.
"There are security implications of technology now. Every major country in the world is pushing to attract technology leaders to participate in hi-tech product development. But we came here on our own, not just for pure commercial reason alone but because we are emotionally attached to India," Verma told PTI in an interview.
Government has taken the first step with the announcement of the Fab policy and MSIPS (Modified Special Incentive Package Scheme), he said.
"Second is Preferential Market Access (PMA) policy which will give support to Indian manufacturers. The policies will enable entrepreneurs to start their own product companies. After seeing HSMC, there are many NRIs who will come up to set up their companies here," Verma added.
While government has already issued notification under PMA policy for government procurement, the one concerning private sector procurements is at present going through inter-ministerial consultations. After it is completed, it is likely to be put before government for its nod.
Apart from HSMC-ST Electronic-Silterra grouping, another consortium led by Jaiprakash AssociatesBSE 3.13 % in association with IBM has been given the green signal to start their fab unit.
Verma, who has invested in over 80 technology firms, said Indians have played a key role in development of almost all of the leading semiconductor firms companies or electronic chips.
"Indians design chip for the world but the IPR is not owned by them. Wafer fab unit will give India an opportunity to generate IPR of their own and create IPR portfolios from India, which is one of the objectives of the government.
"For example, I know an Indian techie who alone owns over 500 IPRs in this technology," Verma said.
HSMC says it has an experienced team with complete domain expertise, technologies and partnership in place to start building a fab unit.
"The first set of wafer in which there will be many chips will start rolling out within three years," Verma said.
Story from PTI, Economic Times