Annual sales of semiconductor equipment manufacturers worldwide fell 7 percent from a record high of US$64.5 billion to US$59.8 billion last year, but Taiwan bucked the downtrend by posting growth of 68 percent, SEMI said in a statement yesterday.
Taiwan last year became the largest market for new semiconductor equipment, with sales soaring to US$17.12 billion, dislodging South Korea from the top spot, SEMI said.
Hsinchu-based Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) was a major contributor, spending US$14.9 billion on new equipment last year, the trade group said.
Photo: Tyrone Siu, Reuters
TSMC, which supplies chips for Apple Inc’s iPhones, plans to raise its capital expenditure to as much as US$16 billion this year, primarily for 3-nanometer, 5-nanometer and 7-nanometer technologies.
China maintained its position as the second-largest semiconductor equipment market, with sales rising 3 percent annually to US$13.45 billion, followed by South Korea at US$9.97 billion, after receipts declined 44 percent annually, SEMI statistics showed.
Equipment sales in North America last year jumped 40 percent to US$8.15 billion, the third consecutive annual increase, while new equipment markets in Japan and Europe contracted from a year earlier, SEMI said.
Global assembly and packaging, and test equipment sales also faltered, declining 27 percent and 11 percent respectively, it said.
Sales to China rose across all major equipment segments, except for assembly and packaging, it added.
ASML Holding NV, a crucial equipment supplier to Samsung Electronics Co and TSMC, yesterday refrained from providing guidance for the second quarter due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but hinted toward a significantly more profitable quarter.
The Dutch company, which produces extreme ultraviolet-lithography equipment, said that it has seen a strong order intake and no change in demand.
However, the company said that it expects significant uncertainty about how the pandemic would affect global economic growth, end markets, its manufacturing capability and its supply chain.
Additional reporting by Bloomberg
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