Overseas Political Feud Involves Apple’s Chip Supplier

What you should know

  • Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), the largest contract chipmaker and Taiwan’s most important company, is at the center of election campaigning in Taiwan. TSMC is also Apple‘s chip supplier, providing the A17 Pro chip for the new iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max devices.
  • The company’s overseas investments have become a point of contention between two vice-presidential candidates in Taiwan. The candidates argued over whether tensions with China make Taiwan too dangerous a place to invest.
  • Jaw Shaw-kong, VP candidate for Taiwan’s Kuomintang (KMT) party, expressed concerns that TSMC might move its operations overseas due to the unstable environment in Taiwan. He blamed the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) for tensions with China.
  • The DPP’s vice presidential candidate Hsiao Bi-khim responded by stating that TSMC is the pride of Taiwan and should not be used for political competition. TSMC, which is building factories in Japan and the U.S. state of Arizona and planning another in Germany, did not immediately respond to these comments.


Full Story

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, or TSMC, is in the spotlight. It’s the early days of 2024 and this company is smack dab in the middle of an election campaign clash.

TSMC isn’t just any company. It’s the largest contract chipmaker and Taiwan’s most important company. Plus, it’s Apple’s chip supplier.

And guess what? Apple is TSMC’s biggest customer. It’s a sweet deal for both, especially since Apple managed to cut a deal with TSMC and save a ton of money not so long ago.

The new iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max devices are packing something special. They’re powered by TSMC’s A17 Pro chip, which uses the 3nm process node. Now, if you’re not a tech geek, you might be wondering what the heck that means.

Well, 3nm is cutting-edge technology. The lower the number, the more transistors a chip can hold. This makes it more powerful and energy efficient.

But here’s where things get heated. TSMC is now a hot topic for two vice presidential candidates in Taiwan. They’re arguing over the company’s overseas investments and whether tensions with China make Taiwan too dangerous a place to invest.

The 2024 Taiwanese presidential elections are happening in days, on January 13. Reports highlight how China, which claims Taiwan as its own territory, has stepped up military pressure, including staging war games near the island.

Jaw Shaw-kong, VP candidate for Taiwan’s Kuomintang (KMT) party, spoke at a live debate. He said Wall Street financiers had met him before he knew he was entering the presidential race and asked if there was going to be war.

“Without peace, nobody will dare invest,” Jaw said. He blames the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) for tensions with China. He also voiced concerns about TSMC wanting to run off overseas, saying it would hollow out Taiwan.

TSMC is building factories in Japan and Arizona, and planning another in Germany. They didn’t immediately respond to Reuters for comment.

The DPP’s vice presidential candidate Hsiao Bi-khim, formerly Taiwan’s high-profile de facto ambassador to the United States, said, “TSMC is the pride of Taiwan and should not be used for political competition or consumption. It is our sacred mountain protecting the country.”

Derrick Flynn
Derrick Flynnhttps://www.phonesinsights.com
With over four years of experience in tech journalism, Derrick has honed his skills and knowledge to become a vital part of the PhonesInsights team. His intuitive reviews and insightful commentary on the latest smartphones and wearable technology consistently provide our readers with valuable information.

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