Intel may abandon investment plans in Italy and France

In 2022, Intel engaged in discussions with the Italian government to initiate a $5 billion investment in constructing a packaging and testing facility. This venture was anticipated to receive substantial financial backing from the government, covering approximately 40% of the costs, in addition to other subsidies and incentives. Furthermore, Intel also planned to establish a research and development and design center in France, aiming to forge a comprehensive semiconductor supply chain across Europe.

According to reports, Italy’s Minister of Economic Development, Adolfo Urso, indicated that Intel had either abandoned or postponed its investment plans in Italy and France, thereby not fulfilling its previously outlined European investment strategy. Nonetheless, Italy has not entirely relinquished its pursuit of Intel, with Urso stating that Italy remains welcoming should Intel reconsider its decision.

Earlier this week, Silicon Box announced its intention to invest €3.2 billion in Northern Italy to build an advanced packaging facility expected to utilize next-generation technology by 2028 and create 1,600 direct new jobs. Urso welcomed this development, viewing it as the first significant foreign investment in Italy’s semiconductor industry, with anticipation for further investments in the coming months.

Additionally, it has been reported that the United States government is poised to announce significant incentives for Intel’s Arizona operations as part of the CHIPS Act, which allocates $39 billion in direct funding and $75 billion in loans and guarantees. Intel is expected to receive one of the largest subsidies to date under this initiative, rumored to be in the billions of dollars. This follows a precedent where the U.S. Department of Commerce awarded GlobalFoundries $1.5 billion in direct funding, along with $1.6 billion in loans, as part of the CHIPS Act.

To expedite its IDM 2.0 strategy, Intel decided in 2021 to significantly expand its capacity by investing approximately $20 billion to construct two new wafer fabrication plants in Arizona’s Ocotillo campus, dedicated to advancing next-generation EUV production lines serving Intel 20A and Intel 18A processes. These new facilities, named “Fab 52” and “Fab 62,” are expected to commence operations in 2024.