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Samsung to splurge $230B on five new chip plants for South Korea

Will build out domestic industry while it builds out US domestic industry...

Samsung Electronics is slated to invest $230 billion over the next 20 years to build five semiconductor plants in South Korea as part of a wider plan from the government to beef up domestic supply.

It is not clear exactly what each plant will do, but a spokesperson reportedly said some would be for foundry chipmaking.

The government is set on creating a state-of-the-art semiconductor cluster, which President Seok-Yeol Yoon said at the government's 14th emergency economic and public livelihood meeting would be the "world's largest."

The cluster is destined for Yongin, south of Seoul in Gyeonggi Province, where both SK hynix and Samsung have a presence. The cluster would eventually contain the five advanced chip fabrication facilities and around 150 companies that produce materials, parts or equipment related to R&D or fabless firms.

The semiconductor effort is part of a wider $380 trillion plus private-sector investment plan that promotes six industries. Aside from chips, the plan bolsters displays, batteries, biopharmaceutical, electric vehicles and robots.

The government itself plans to pitch in $19 billion for R&D, $275 billion for chip packaging and $76 billion for infrastructure. Korea's industry ministry said the efforts would allow the country to "leap forward as a high-tech industrial superpower."

It is unclear whether this investment means Samsung's plans to spend $17 billion in Texas have been reduced or if it represents additional capacity.

However, in the economic public livelihood meeting, Joon did say the planned semiconductor ecosystem "overwhelms Texas in the United States."

Samsung has reportedly expressed reservations about requirements in the US CHIPS Act that could make its stateside plans less lucrative.

The company additionally said it would invest just under $46 billion over the next decade in areas not in Gyeonggi Province, but rather in Chungcheong, Gyeongsang and Honam. That cash will bolster batteries, displays, chip packaging and more. ®

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