Since fabs were in the US some time ago then moved to other countries. It seems ironic and absurd to "require" these countries to move them back.
Please correct me if I am, but it seems to me that around the time NAFTA passed, Congress also passed legislation to remove R&D tax credits to companies as well as providing tax incentives to develop in other countries! Soon after NAFTA, the company I worked for, Telex Computer Products, moved some of its printer manufacturing to Mexico. Not long after that "Made in the USA" lost any significance.
Twenty years ago or more it would have been treasonous to do business with a Communist Country. But now, we not only have most of our manufacturing with them, we borrow massive amounts of money?? Americans just don't seem to care.
Those who lend money possess power over those that borrow. Our Nation is falling. We will only survive if the People wake up to catch ourselves from the fall.
A clarification to my previous post:
The problem in the US economy right now is that Americans consume more foreign goods and services than American. This is in part because they are cheaper viz. Chinese Imports and in part because they are better viz. Japanese and German imports. This is reflected in the $840 billion dollar trade deficit that America had in 2008. Multiplying this deficit by the cost of production of these goods and services in the US will amount to close to 50% of US GDP. The fact that American's buy more foreign made stuff has made the US economy a net export oriented economy which is reflected in the inverse relation of the US Stock Markets with the strength of the US Dollar. Considering the fact that the US trade deficit has been in the hundreds of billion dollar range for quite a few years, any growth that US has seen in production over the past few years has been from exports and not domestic consumption.
Increasing domestic consumption requires that the US imports be balanced as a function of its exports. Had the US exports grown in the same proportion as its imports, it would not be in the state that it is in today. This is a reflection of the fact that the current minimum wages make the US consumer the most powerful consumer in the world. The US doesn't see any benefits from the high minimum wages because of consumption of imports in greater proportion than the consumption of domestic goods and services.
A consumption oriented trade certificate which limits US imports as a function of US exports to its trading partners will solve the high unemployment problem by bridging the trade deficit. And as the close to 500000 people get stable jobs, their tax revenue will be enough to reign in the US debt.
It is about being competitve, money has no emotion other than greed. Clearly, manufacturing went offshore for a reason, it was cheaper. Follow the money: China has the fastest growing economy in the world and hence have the greatest economy of scale. China, a communist state, is outdoing the U.S. on manufacturing; who would have thought? They have free-trade areas. They can force manufacturing on their turf if you want to do business there. They have lower labour costs, but does that really matter given the automation that is available? So what can the U.S. do? Lower taxes, provide incentives, and encourage a stronger domestic economy by facilitating immigration to grow the local population, make U.S. based free-trade zones, etc. With all the education and braintrust that the U.S. has, there is really no excuse for not being competitive.
Regarding the quote I need to go deeper in this subject: When you follow the manufacturing rules of the foundry, you have to fit or change your layout! Normally the rule for the manufactureability is made so that the manufacturing is easy and safe. This is certainly on cost of the layout and hence chip size. If you do not have the manufacturing, you do not know how much you loose on the chip size saving! The best is the compromise between design and manufacturing rule dictation! Furthermore the manufacturing outside will make "copy" possible since the manufacturing process is known to the "copiers". The danger is that your product will soon be on the market but not under your own name!
[quote]Not having Manufacturing close to desing is like a athlete who wants to run 100m under 9 seconds and has no place to practise![/quote]
That may have been true 50 years ago, but in todays world of overnight shipping and awesome internet connections you could send your design to a foundry overseas and get back your batch in the same week.
I find it sad that only "money argument" counts. Not having Manufacturing close to desing is like a athlete who wants to run 100m under 9 seconds and has no place to practise! He will do a lot of breathing excercises to steel himself, but never knows how all this will do on the run way! Foundries make their own experiences and imply to the fabless guys to do what they call "manufactureability rule". Here the link in the supply change is broken! This is bad. Back to the salary: the salary is different, that is true, however, with proper planing and improving efficiency in manufactring, one can make up the differences. Furthermore, in a 300 mm waferfab, the salary portion is small compared to the total cost! Unless the big guys take so much of the cake leaving nothing to the operators or technicians!
I am assuming that this article is a mere troll, attempting to draw out the commentators. The commentary provides more meaningful insight and ideas than the main article. I would have expected more from an editor at the EE Times.
The lack of manufacturing fabs is a symptom, not the disease. The disease is the poisonouns belief that the "market" solves all problems, espoused since the election of Reagan in 1980. America competes with managed economies, most of which postpone instant gratification for long term benefits, and use tax policies to achieve national objectives. The Republican "free marketeers" (a polite euphamism for greed) have blocked the intelligent use of government policy and, as a consequence, we have witnessed a steady decline in American pre-eminence in a host of endeavors. Why, for example, is gasoline $2.50 a gallon here vs. $7/gallon in virtually all civilized (non-oil producing) nations? Because of thirty years of immature political "leadership" which lacked the courage to address this and other issues that inflict short term pain in exchange for a myriad of long term benefits. Republican national economic policy can be summarized simply as "lower taxes", while other countries implement nuanced tax and incentive policies which do indeed ultimately pick winners and losers. The so-called omnipotent "market" has clearly failed miserably to pick winners and losers, as we have seen in the tech bust of 2000 and the economic disintegration of 2008. Intelligent government policies could hardly have done worse.
[quote]Case in point, OLED technology was invented in the US, but no US Company has had the courage to invest for ten years in maturing this technology for high volume low cost production. On the other hand, Korea and Japan have made huge investments in this technology for more than 10 years and it is about to pay off for them.[/quote]
I think this says a lot about the state of corporate america these days. I don't think the solution to our problem is as the author of the article suggests, and I'm not even sure if it is possible to do that. Our biggest problem is that we don't seem to invest nearly enough in our own technologies.