Intel Suspends Expansion of Factory Plan in Israel

11 June 2024 33


On June 11, after Intel’s German wafer factory, which was originally planned to invest $30 billion, was suspended due to subsidies and land disputes, Intel announced that it would temporarily shelve its chip factory expansion project in southern Israel. Intel has recently notified a well-known Israeli infrastructure construction company to suspend the expansion plan of the factory in Gat Town. In addition, according to the Israeli Economist, Intel has also notified its suppliers to cancel the equipment and material supply contracts originally prepared for the new factory.


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Looking back to December last year, Intel announced a grand investment plan to spend $25 billion to build a new chip manufacturing plant in Israel and intends to obtain a $3.2 billion subsidy from the Israeli government. However, it now seems that this expansion plan has changed.


In this regard, the company did not explain the reason for stopping the expansion, nor did it mention the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) in the Gaza Strip that has lasted for more than 8 months. It only said in the latest statement, “Israel remains one of our major global manufacturing and R&D bases, and we are fully committed to promoting development in the region. Managing large projects, especially in our industry, often requires adjusting to changing schedules. Our decisions are based on business conditions, market dynamics and responsible capital management.”


Although this statement did not directly confirm the suspension of the expansion plan, it has caused people to doubt it. After all, in the context of increasingly fierce competition in the global semiconductor market, Intel’s expansion plan is of great significance to its future development. Now, the two major wafer fab projects in Germany and Israel have been blocked one after another, which undoubtedly poses a considerable challenge to Intel’s global layout strategy.


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In fact, Intel’s business in Israel has maintained a good development momentum. Since setting up an office in Israel in 1974, Intel has maintained operations in the country and established multiple R&D and production bases, including three R&D centers in Haifa, Petah Tikva and Jerusalem. Among them, the Kiryat Gat wafer factory is one of Intel’s important production bases in Israel, mainly producing Intel 7 process semiconductor products. The factory not only provides a large number of employment opportunities for the local area, but also makes important contributions to Intel’s global business development.


In addition to the wafer fab, Intel has also made a number of investments in Israel. For example, in 2017, Intel acquired Israeli autonomous driving technology company Mobileye for $15.3 billion, further consolidating its leading position in the field of autonomous driving. These investments not only demonstrate Intel’s emphasis on the Israeli market, but also reflect the close partnership between Intel and Israel.


The latest figures from Intel Israel’s head show that the company’s exports from Israel totaled a record $8.7 billion in 2022, a figure that accounts for 1.75% of Israel’s overall GDP and 5.5% of all Israeli high-tech exports. In addition, Intel Israel actively worked with local businesses, purchasing $3.5 billion worth of goods and services from them. This figure represents a 60% increase compared to 2021 and far exceeds the previous year’s $2.2 billion.


Although Intel’s investment plan in Israel has faced some adjustments and challenges recently, the company’s commitment to R&D and production activities in the region has not changed. Intel is well aware of Israel’s unique advantages in technological innovation and industrial development, so it will continue to work closely with local companies and research institutions to jointly push the boundaries of technological innovation. By working together with Israeli partners, Intel will strive to transform the latest scientific research results into competitive products to meet the needs of the global market. This cooperation model will not only promote Israel’s economic development, but also provide strong support for Intel’s business growth worldwide.


In short, Intel’s decision may be a direct reflection of the dynamic changes in the global chip market. With the rapid development of the technology industry and increasingly fierce market competition, companies have to observe market conditions and flexibly adjust their production and investment strategies according to actual needs. Such decisions help Intel better adapt to the current market environment and ensure that its resources are used more effectively. At the same time, it also lays the foundation for it to seize the initiative in future market competition. Through continuous adaptation and adjustment, Intel is expected to maintain its leading position in the global chip market and continue to lead the development trend of the technology industry.




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