President Joe Biden keeps a chip as he speaks before signing an executive order to address a global semiconductor shortage, in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, USA, Feb. 24, 2021.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters
Chief executives of companies, including Google parent Alphabet, AT&T, Intel and General Motors, will attend a virtual summit at the White House on Monday to address the global semiconductor shortage.
The summit comes as the Biden administration begins a review of key U.S. supply chains, including those for semiconductors, high-capacity batteries, medical supplies, and rare earths. The shortage of computer chips is affecting everything from electric vehicle manufacturers to medical supplies.
Automakers such as GM and Ford recently had to lower production estimates or extend the idle time to address the shortage. The supply chain was initially compromised at the start of the Covid pandemic, as much of the world’s chips are produced in Asia, where the crisis first hit.
US officials and lawmakers have underlined the potential security implications of the country’s dependence on other countries for semiconductors. Senate leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., Said in February that “semiconductor manufacturing is a dangerous vulnerability in our economy and in our national security.”
In terms of both economic and national security, the supply chain assessment outlined by Biden’s February executive order seeks to assess the “ resilience and capacity of the U.S. supply chains and defense industrial base in support of national security. [and] emergency preparedness. “
The White House has also said it is seeking to close gaps in domestic production and supply chains that are dominated by or run by “countries that are or will become unfriendly or unstable.”
While the White House evaluation does not explicitly mention China, the directive is likely largely an attempt by the government to determine how dependent the US economy and military are on a critical group of Chinese exports.
The virtual summit will be hosted by National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and NEC Director Brian Deese, along with Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, the White House said. Attendees will discuss Biden’s US job plan and how to strengthen the US semiconductor supply chain, the White House said.
Here is the full list of companies whose executives will participate in the summit:
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