The semiconductor sector stands as the backbone of the global technology industry, driving innovation and enabling the devices and systems that power our modern world. From smartphones to advanced medical equipment, semiconductors are the invisible engines that make it all possible. In an era where technology is rapidly evolving, the semiconductor industry has emerged as a critical player, influencing not just the consumer electronics market but also the fields of artificial intelligence, 5G communication, and autonomous vehicles.

India, with its ambitions of becoming a semiconductor manufacturing hub, has not been a passive observer in this transformative landscape. The country, known for its software and IT prowess, is setting its sights on the hardware side of the technology spectrum. The vision is clear - to establish itself as a prominent player in semiconductor manufacturing, a sector that has historically been dominated by countries like the United States, Taiwan, South Korea, and China.

The Semiconductor Landscape in India:

As India's aspirations in the semiconductor sector gain momentum, it becomes imperative to gauge the current state of the industry within the country. India's semiconductor landscape is in a state of transformation, positioning itself as a formidable contender on the global semiconductor map.

At present, the semiconductor industry in India primarily comprises the design and research and development (R&D) segments, with an increasing focus on manufacturing. While the manufacturing of semiconductor components is still in its nascent stages, significant investments and policy support are propelling the industry forward.

Key Players and Notable Companies:

Several key players and notable companies are contributing to the growth and development of India's semiconductor sector:

  • Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO): ISRO has been at the forefront of India's semiconductor industry, primarily focusing on the development of semiconductors for space applications. Its endeavors have contributed to the growth of the semiconductor ecosystem within the country.
  • Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL): BEL is a leading player in the defense electronics sector and has ventured into semiconductor manufacturing. It has developed a semiconductor fabrication unit to cater to the growing demand for indigenous semiconductor components in defense and aerospace applications.
  • STMicroelectronics: This multinational semiconductor company operates in India and plays a pivotal role in research and development. STMicroelectronics contributes to semiconductor innovation and has a significant presence in the Indian semiconductor landscape.
  • Intel India: A subsidiary of Intel Corporation, Intel India has been actively engaged in semiconductor design and R&D. It has made substantial investments in India and is at the forefront of research and innovation in the semiconductor domain.
  • Texas Instruments: Texas Instruments is another multinational semiconductor company with a substantial presence in India. It operates in the design and development space, focusing on analog and digital semiconductors.
  • Semiconductor Laboratory (SCL): SCL is an R&D facility under the Department of Space, Government of India. It is instrumental in indigenous semiconductor development for space applications and contributes to semiconductor research in the country.
  • Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Labs: Several IITs across India have established semiconductor labs dedicated to research and development. These institutions play a pivotal role in nurturing semiconductor talent and innovation.

The Indian government's "Make in India" initiative, along with other policies and incentives, has attracted both domestic and international players to invest in the semiconductor sector. These key players are advancing semiconductor research, development, and manufacturing capabilities within the country. With a strong focus on indigenous semiconductor production and innovation, India's semiconductor landscape is evolving, positioning itself as a promising contributor to the global semiconductor industry.

India's Semiconductor Revolution: Navigating Collaborations, Investments, and Innovations

India's semiconductor sector is making significant strides with a focus on collaboration and sustainable growth. The recent approval of a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) between India and Japan on the Japan-India Semiconductor Supply Chain Partnership, signed in July 2023, marks a pivotal development. This MoC, spanning a five-year term, is set to build upon existing initiatives like the India-Japan Digital Partnership and the India-Japan Industrial Competitiveness Partnership, aiming to expand and enhance cooperation within the electronics ecosystem.

TATA Projects, known for its commitment to sustainable construction practices, has secured the contract for constructing Micron Technology's advanced semiconductor assembly and testing facility in Sanand, Gujarat. This state-of-the-art facility is meticulously planned to meet the Green Building Council's LEED Gold Standards, incorporating cutting-edge water-saving technologies to facilitate a Zero Liquid Discharge system. This underscores Tata Projects' dedication to sustainability.

Micron Technology, a global leader in chip manufacturing, is set to establish its ATMP (Assembly, Test, and Packaging) plant in Sanand, Gujarat, spanning an impressive 1.4 million square feet. The first phase of the facility is scheduled to begin producing packaged chips by December 2024, with the second phase slated for later in the decade. This move reflects the company's commitment to strengthening its presence in India.

Simmtech, a key supplier to Micron Technology, is all set to establish a facility in close proximity to Micron's manufacturing site in Sanand, Gujarat. This strategic move signals a growing synergy between industry players, underlining the semiconductor sector's potential for expansion and innovation.

The Indian government is taking substantial steps to bolster the semiconductor industry's growth. Plans for a Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) cluster, as part of the India AI program, aim to support startups focused on training artificial intelligence models within India. The government's proposed INR 11-12 billion design-linked incentive scheme extends its support to domestic startups and foreign companies looking to contribute to chip design for AI applications.

A significant prediction suggests that the semiconductor industry in India is on the cusp of generating a demand for 1.2 million jobs across a wide spectrum of roles, ranging from engineers to technicians. As manufacturing advances and design functions evolve, this demand is expected to grow.

Micron Technology's groundbreaking development continues as it commences construction on its semiconductor testing and assembly facility in Sanand, Gujarat. This comes shortly after the company's initial announcement of a substantial investment of US$2.75 billion. With Micron's commitment of US$825 million and the Indian government's subsidy support, this endeavor signifies a significant leap in India's semiconductor journey.

Adding to this promising landscape, Rajasthan-based Sahasra Semiconductor, a key player in India's Scheme for Promotion of Manufacturing of Electronic Components and Semiconductors (SPECS), is gearing up to commence the commercial production of the first made-in-India memory chips at its Bhiwadi plant. This milestone marks a significant step in achieving self-reliance in semiconductor manufacturing, with the company focusing on packaging basic memory products and advanced solutions. Under SPECS, Sahasra receives a 25 percent financial incentive on capital expenditure, bolstering its contribution to the semiconductor sector.

These developments signify a burgeoning semiconductor ecosystem in India, with partnerships, investments, and innovation propelling the sector toward a promising future. India's semiconductor landscape is poised for growth, offering opportunities for both domestic and international stakeholders to participate in this transformative journey.

India's semiconductor sector is experiencing a transformative wave of investments, partnerships, and development, marking a significant milestone in the country's tech evolution. Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), a prominent US semiconductor chip design company, is set to invest up to US$400 million over the next five years, aiming to establish its largest design facility in Bengaluru. With a commitment to creating around 3,000 additional engineering roles by 2028, AMD is poised to expand its presence to 10 locations across India. This move underscores the company's commitment to the Indian tech ecosystem, offering a boost to the country's engineering talent.

The semiconductor industry in India is witnessing a series of groundbreaking initiatives. Micron Technology, a global semiconductor giant, has inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Gujarat government to establish a state-of-the-art semiconductor unit in Sanand. This project, valued at INR 225 billion (US$2.74 billion), is set to generate 5,000 direct job opportunities, contributing significantly to India's semiconductor manufacturing capabilities.

The semiconductor ecosystem is thriving not only in terms of manufacturing but also in partnerships and international collaborations. India and Japan have formally agreed to establish a joint mechanism, facilitating collaboration between their governments and industries in the semiconductor domain. This Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) spans five crucial areas, including semiconductor design, manufacturing, equipment research, talent development, and enhancing the resilience of the semiconductor supply chain. The collaboration aims to foster innovation, technology exchange, and the overall development of the semiconductor sector in both nations.

Sustainable practices are also at the forefront of semiconductor manufacturing. Tata Projects, for instance, is meticulously planning the construction of Micron Technology's semiconductor assembly and testing facility in Sanand, Gujarat, to adhere to the Green Building Council's LEED Gold Standards. This not only underscores Tata Projects' dedication to sustainability but also sets a promising precedent for eco-friendly semiconductor manufacturing in India.

Semicon India 2023, a prominent event dedicated to semiconductors, is poised to bring together industry leaders and global players such as Foxconn, Micron, AMD, IBM, Marvell, Vedanta, LAM Research, NXP Semiconductors, ST Microelectronics, and more. The event signifies the growing importance of India in the global semiconductor landscape and will witness participation from twenty-three countries, including the Indian states of Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat. Leading academic institutions, including Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay, BITS Pilani, and Nirma University, are also actively contributing to India's semiconductor advancements, highlighting their role in driving innovation.

In addition to these developments, the Indian government's proactive approach includes the modernization of the Semiconductor Laboratory (SCL) in Mohali, aiming to transform it into a state-of-the-art chip manufacturing unit. Furthermore, the proposed Odisha Semiconductor Manufacturing & Fabless Policy is set to attract investors and facilitate semiconductor manufacturing in the eastern state of Odisha, offering attractive incentives for manufacturing units and fabless product/IP companies. This policy signifies India's commitment to becoming a significant player in the global semiconductor industry.

While India's semiconductor journey is filled with promises and potential, it's not without its challenges. Partnerships like the Vedanta-Foxconn joint venture and STMicroelectronics' involvement are facing complexities. Still, the resilience and commitment to enhancing semiconductor manufacturing in India are evident.

These developments underscore India's rapid ascent in the global semiconductor landscape, offering a glimpse into a dynamic and ever-evolving industry that holds the key to the country's technological future.

The Indian government is making significant strides in boosting its semiconductor and electronics manufacturing industry. It has allocated substantial funds and implemented various initiatives to attract investments and promote the domestic semiconductor ecosystem.

One of the key developments is the government's decision to invest $1.2 billion in modernizing the Semiconductor Laboratory (SCL) in Mohali, Punjab. This investment is aimed at upgrading the existing facility, which has been instrumental in producing 8-inch CMOS microchip wafers used in strategic areas like the space program. The modernization of SCL aligns with the objectives of the India Semiconductor Mission, which seeks to make the facility commercially viable and technologically advanced.

To support semiconductor design startups, the government has set aside INR 11-12 billion (approximately $133.83 million-$146 million). The Semiconductor Design-Linked Incentive scheme has already attracted 27 startups, fostering innovation and growth in this sector.

Another significant development is the potential $1 billion investment proposal by Micron Technology, a major US semiconductor company, to establish an Assembly, Test, Marking, and Packaging (ATMP) facility in India. This investment underscores India's growing appeal as a semiconductor manufacturing destination.

In partnership with global players, the Indian government is actively encouraging the establishment of semiconductor fabs in the country. The Vedanta-Foxconn joint venture, for instance, is working on setting up India's first semiconductor production plant. This project, with an estimated investment of over INR 1.54 trillion (approximately $20 billion), aims to boost semiconductor manufacturing, addressing the country's growing demand for electronic components.

ISMC and IGSS Venture are also planning semiconductor plants in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, respectively, contributing to the growth of India's semiconductor industry.

Furthermore, the Indian government is revisiting and expanding its semiconductor manufacturing incentives, aiming to attract investments and strengthen the local semiconductor supply chain.

These developments are significant milestones in India's journey to becoming a prominent player in the global semiconductor industry, with an expected market value of $55 billion by 2026. With support from various government initiatives and growing interest from global players, India is poised to become a key semiconductor manufacturing hub.