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Taiwan Offers Semiconductor Tech Support for Lithuania

Taiwan plans to set up a semiconductor task force for Lithuania as the two nations join hands to develop alternate supply chains which have been disrupted by the global spread of coronavirus. The Baltic nation wants to achieve greater sovereignty in developing regional semiconductor supply chains and expand its manufacturing capacity.

The Lithuanian government aims to play a critical role in the regional chip supply chains. Taiwan would build up a semiconductor task force in 2022 that will work to offer expertise to the Baltic state, train much-needed engineers, and attract semiconductor investment to the state. Taiwan is known throughout the world for its fully developed semiconductor ecosystem and talent pool, and today, Taiwan is willing to share its experience with Lithuania.

– Eric Huang, Taiwan’s first representative to Lithuania

Previously, a Taiwanese delegation signed memorandums of understanding (MOU) with Enterprise Lithuania and Invest Lithuania to promote collaboration on semiconductor and biotechnology development during its visit to the European country.

Diplomats and foreign policy commentators stated that there is a growing awareness worldwide that overdependence on China for key inputs for economic development must be reduced. Increasingly, one can see the need for sustainable supply chains being underlined in international deliberations including amongst the Quad countries. Taiwan has proven capacity and capability in high tech areas including semiconductors and this is one of the several reasons for the West’s desire to engage Taiwan.

Technology specialists and experts working in the technology-for-development fields are unanimous about Taiwan’s prowess and global leadership in the field. In the quest to ensure its continued leadership in the global semiconductor industry, Taiwan has rightly selected Lithuania as its partner. With an impressive 11th rank among 190 countries in ease of doing business index and an ideal gateway for the European market, the deal, if implemented will be a win-win for both Taiwan and Lithuania.

Taiwan has a fully developed semiconductor ecosystem and human resource talent, which it will willingly share with Lithuania. The two countries have already signed agreements to promote collaboration on semiconductors as well as for biotechnology development.

Through these collaborations, Taiwan is also looking to leverage Lithuania’s global leadership in laser technologies. Taiwan is focused on building alternate supply chains for semiconductors. He said that his country will begin with training programmes for Lithuania and simultaneously build up cooperation in other sectors of semiconductor technologies.

Previously, Lithuania’s trade with Taiwan was very limited, according to the Baltic country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs: as of 2020, Taiwan only accounts for 1.6% of Lithuania’s laser export. However, the warming ties between Taiwan and Lithuania might change the dynamics, especially when Taiwan’s semiconductor industry seeks a larger role in photonics, satellites and the automotive sector, all of which depend on advanced laser technology.

As reported by OpenGov Asia, the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) stated that Taiwan will engage in cooperation and exchanges with the Baltic states in the areas of quantum technology and biotechnology. The two countries are expected to lead to future bilateral academic and research exchanges. Both countries will discuss technology development, biomedicine, semiconductors and technology parks.

The nations have concluded that the plans for future cooperation between Taiwan and the Baltic states – Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia – will focus on academic and research exchanges in the quantum technology and biotech areas.

This direction was chosen after considering the Baltic states’ position as members of the European Union, with varying levels of technological development and expertise, and Taiwan’s current policy on science and technology research. The ministry added the delegation, which includes the parliamentary representatives Matas Maldeikis of Lithuania, Janis Vucans of Latvia and Juri Jaanson of Estonia showed positive interest in supporting bilateral cooperation and exchanges in the field of technology.

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