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Mo Dakang: Analysis of semiconductor globalization.

October 27, 2020


The trade war has intensified, and the US has been infinitely suppressing China's semiconductor industry. It has once again taught us a profound lesson: "If you do not master the core technology, you will be passively beaten."


In this context, the sound of localization at this stage is rising, but localization cannot be achieved overnight. It requires unremitting investment and effort, especially in EDA tools and IP, semiconductor equipment and materials, which are all "hard bones". ", at least in a short period of time is unlikely to make breakthrough progress.


Therefore, many experts in the industry have proposed that globalization should be promoted, instead of going into seclusion and emphasizing the wrong way of 100% localization.


The development of China's semiconductor industry is in a special position and a special period. It can be said that there is no "one-size-fits-all solution" for us. Therefore, from the observation of practice for such a long time, the development of China's semiconductor industry has made achievements, but there are some fluctuations, ups and downs, and even some "mixed fish and dragons", which is not surprising.


At this stage, advocating for localization is being forced, and China's semiconductor industry must open a "channel" through localization and its process. It is by no means a simple domestic substitute available, but must be an obvious qualitative improvement in product or technology. Only such localization can really play a practical effect.


At the same time, it is very correct to advocate globalization. The semiconductor industry chain is long and is the most thoroughly globalized industry. Without global coordination, it is impossible to succeed. For example, the EUV lithography machine of ASML in the Netherlands has 100,000 parts, involving Germany to provide Zeiss lenses, Japan to provide special composite materials, Sweden's industrial precision machine tool technology, and the United States to provide control software and power supplies.


Therefore, for the development of China's semiconductor industry, only the integration of the two can achieve the goal. However, the Chinese semiconductor industry needs to have a correct understanding of globalization. It cannot come naturally. It needs to win through hard work and competition to truly embrace globalization.

Globalization and localization

Since almost 80% of China's semiconductor equipment and materials need to be imported, it is unimaginable for China's semiconductor industry to leave global support. However, China's semiconductor industry is in a special position, and its globalization process is destined to be full of various challenges, such as the "Wassenaar Treaty" and the recent trade war.


Under such a severe situation, China's semiconductor industry must be more pragmatic, advocating globalization, but not relying entirely on it. At the same time, the process of localization must be strengthened. The two complement each other and improve together.

1. China's semiconductor industry is a beneficiary of globalization

Since the 1980s, with the realization of China's reform and opening up, the development of China's semiconductor industry has made rapid progress under the globalization dividend, which is obvious to all. But it must not be forgotten that the western advanced technology export control, its "Wasenna Treaty" has never stopped working. Tightly and loosely controlling the development of China's semiconductor industry, the most important lesson is that all advanced technologies must rely on their own research and development and efforts, and there is no shortcut.

2. Globalization is changing

Each country will adjust its globalization strategy according to its own interests and changes in the external environment. For example, since the new crown pneumonia, due to restrictions on logistics and personnel, the trend of vertical integration of products has been strengthened, and mutual trust has weakened. Therefore, the trend of anti-globalization has prevailed recently.

3. The lithography machine is a breakthrough in localization

The U.S. uses its strengths to suppress the shortcomings of China's semiconductor industry. Therefore, it must be tit-for-tat. There is no way out. Although it is very complicated and difficult to solve the problem of lithography machine, it needs a long time to invest and gather domestic superior forces, but it has a "demonstration effect."


Recently, there are very few public opinions that they should invest in Japanese lithography machine manufacturers, such as Nikon or Canon, and pay technology patent fees to cooperate in the development of lithography machines for China. I believe that trying to reduce the "self-pressure" and expecting to achieve the goal easily may not produce results.

4. Globalization is not only about taking, but also about paying

We can't just think of making up for our own shortcomings through globalization, but we must constantly improve our competitiveness and make our due contributions to globalization.

5. The strength of localization determines the length of time the era of globalization will arrive.


In a special period like today, it is necessary to advocate localization, but there must be a plan and depth. Because localization requires a lot of financial support and time training, it must be carried out selectively. At the same time, at the more difficult time, globalization cannot be given up. The development of China's semiconductor industry must "integrate the two industrializations" and exert efforts at the same time to have the hope of success.


Where is the hope of China's semiconductor industry in the future? This is the first question that must be answered. It has the world's largest market and government funding and policy support, as well as the talent team and foundation accumulated in the recent stage. The most important thing is that we are on the side of justice. Only because the rapid development and progress of China's semiconductor industry has moved the "cheese" of the United States, is there a "reason" for suppression.


Globalization is not a "gift" of the West. It needs to be gradually achieved through the success of partial localization. It must be won by hard work and competition.


At the same time, we must believe that the market is the foundation for the development of the global semiconductor industry. Therefore, the trade war is destined to be tight and loose. It is impossible for the West not to be moved by the big market. Therefore, the Chinese semiconductor industry must strive to improve itself quickly, wait patiently, and make full use of every favorable opportunity.