The U.S. has been forced over the past two years to navigate a global semiconductor shortage, which has affected the day-to-day lives of nearly every American. The experience has given us the opportunity to consider the miracles that make our nation’s technological, economic and military leadership possible. The computer-chip industry is one. We have discussed this with our fellow CEOs Geoff Martha of Medtronic and Jim Taiclet of Lockheed-Martin , and it is clear to all of us that something must be done to address the shortage of chips critical to our nation’s economy and defense. That is why we urge Congress to act quickly to make sure the U.S. has a reliable supply of domestically produced semiconductors.
The pandemic supply-chain shock exposed a problem that had been mounting for years. The U.S. share of global chip manufacturing has declined to 12% from 37% in 1990. South Korea and Taiwan, notably, have spent years actively investing in their own chip manufacturing, creating an uneven playing field for U.S. chip makers that harms our economy and global competitiveness.