Intel announced the first phase of its plans to invest as much as 80 billion euros in the European Union over the next decade along the entire semiconductor value chain – from research and development (R&D) to manufacturing to state-of-the art packaging technologies.
The announcement includes plans to invest an initial 17 billion euros into a leading-edge semiconductor fab mega-site in Germany, to create a new R&D and design hub in France, and to invest in R&D, manufacturing and foundry services in Ireland, Italy, Poland and Spain.
With this landmark investment, Intel plans to bring its most advanced technology to Europe, creating a next-generation European chip ecosystem and addressing the need for a more balanced and resilient supply chain.
The investment program is centered around balancing the global semiconductor supply chain with a major expansion of Intel’s production capacities in Europe. In the initial phase, Intel plans to develop two first-of-their-kind semiconductor fabs in Magdeburg, Germany, the capital of Saxony-Anhalt. Planning will start immediately, with construction expected to begin in the first half of 2023 and production planned to come online in 2027, pending European Commission approval. The new fabs are expected to deliver chips using Intel’s most advanced, Angstrom-era transistor technologies, serving the needs of both foundry customers and Intel for Europe and globally as part of the company’s IDM (integrated device manufacturer) 2.0 strategy.
At the center of Europe and with top talent, superb infrastructure and an existing ecosystem of suppliers and customers, Germany is an ideal place to establish a new hub – a “Silicon Junction” – for advanced chipmaking. Intel plans to initially invest 17 billion euros, creating 7,000 construction jobs over the course of the build, 3,000 permanent high-tech jobs at Intel, and tens of thousands of additional jobs across suppliers and partners. Intel plans to refer to the new site as the Silicon Junction, connecting technology. This Silicon Junction will serve as the connection point for other centers of innovation and manufacturing across the country and region.
Intel is also continuing to invest in its Leixlip, Ireland, expansion project, spending an additional 12 billion euros and doubling the manufacturing space to bring Intel 4 process technology to Europe and expand foundry services. Once complete, this expansion will bring Intel’s total investment in Ireland to more than 30 billion euros.
In addition, Intel and Italy have entered into negotiations to enable a state-of-the-art back-end manufacturing facility.
With a potential investment of up to 4.5 billion euros, this factory would create approximately 1,500 Intel jobs plus an additional 3,500 jobs across suppliers and partners, with operations to start between 2025 and 2027. Intel and Italy aim to make this facility a first of its kind in the EU with new and innovative technologies.
This would be in addition to the foundry innovation and growth opportunities Intel expects to pursue in Italy based on its planned acquisition of Tower Semiconductor. Tower has a significant partnership with STMicroelectronics, which has a fab in Agrate Brianza, Italy.
In total, Intel plans to spend more than 33 billion euros on these manufacturing investments. By significantly increasing its manufacturing capacities across the EU, Intel would lay the groundwork to bring various parts of the semiconductor value chain closer together and increase supply chain resiliency in Europe. ■