(Yicai Global) Jan. 27 -- Merck plans to spend at least CNY1 billion (USD158 million) over the next four years to boost its electronic materials capacity in China in order to gain a bigger foothold in the country’s booming integrated circuit industry, the German pharmaceutical and high-performance materials giant said.
Merck, which is one of the biggest electronic materials suppliers to semiconductor manufacturers in the world, plans to use the money to increase production at its three plants in Shanghai and Suzhou, eastern Jiangsu province, to become a more active player in China’s chipmaking sector, it said yesterday.
China is not only the world’s largest semiconductor consumer market, but also the fastest growing market for electronic materials, Kai Beckmann, chief executive officer of Merck’s electronics business sector, told Yicai Global. More than half of global chip products flow to China every year.
Sixty percent of the CNY1 billion investment will go towards expanding the company’s factories in the economic hub of the Yangtze River Delta region, Beckmann said. Twenty percent will be used to enhance the local supply chain and the rest will be used in research and development.
The Yangtze River Delta region has the most complete semiconductor industrial chain in China, comprising design, manufacturing, packaging, testing, equipment and other supporting facilities and services, he said.
Continuous investment in China will bring rich returns, Allan Gabor, president of Merck China and managing director of the electronics business sector in China, told Yicai Global. The firm has invested CNY1 billion in the electronic materials sector in the country over the past decade.
Editor: Kim Taylor