The global semiconductor market grew 10% in May from the year-ago month as the Asia-Pacific market began shaking off the disruptive effects of the SARS virus, which curtailed sales in the prior months.
The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) said its three-month moving average figures indicated May chip sales rose to $12.5 billion, an improvement of 2% from $12.3 billion in April and up from $11.4 billion in May 2002.
The higher May figures lent more credibility to the SIA's forecast for a 10% sales increase in 2003, according to George Scalise, president of the industry trade association.
"As SARS and the geopolitical issues come under control, we expect to see demand in all geographic sectors, especially China, strengthen in the second half of the year," Scalise said in a statement.
The Asia-Pacific maintained its lion-share of the market in May with sales rising 12%, to $4.65 billion from $4.16 billion in the comparable 2002 month.
Japan led the year-over-year increase with a 26% sales spurt, to $2.93 billion from $2.33 billion. In April, sales to Japan were $2.83 billion.
Only the Americas witnessed year-over-year sales decline in the latest month.
Sales to the Americas declined 7%, to $2.47 billion from $2.65 billion while Europe increased 9%, to $2.45 billion from $2.24 billion.
However, European sales declined from the $2.53 billion posted in April.