Intel CEO calls Taiwan unstable and questions chip dependency on Asia, TSMC responds

Intel Core i9-11900K review
Intel Core i9-11900K review (Image credit: Harish Jonnalagadda / Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • At the Fortune Brainstorm Tech summit in California, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger reiterated his long-held stance against chipmaking dependency on Asia, asking whether Taiwan was stable what with the ever-looming specter of China hanging over it.
  • TSMC chairman Mark Liu, in a rare public retort, cast doubt over the idea that many would agree with Intel's stance.

Intel's CEO has had a long history of railing against global dependency on Asia for chipmaking needs. However, his latest comments have attracted a direct response from TSMC, which took an opposing stance on the matter.

While speaking at the Fortune Brainstorm Tech summit, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger backed up his stance that the U.S. government should subsidize domestic companies exclusively when it comes to how it spends the $52 billion it has reserved for chipmakers. He pointed to Taiwan as an example of why a foreign investment could be bad, given China's activity in the region. He called Taiwan "not a stable place."

As reported by the Tapei Times, when referencing China's activities regarding Taiwan, Gelsinger asked whether said operations "make you more comfortable or less if you're now dependent on Taiwan as the singular source of technology for the most critical aspect of our human existence and our national security and economy for the future?"

These comments managed to earn a response from TSMC chairman Mark Liu a few days later, a man who is not known for publicly addressing such remarks. He commented that "not too many people will believe what Intel says," according to Bloomberg.

"It will be very negative for the United States to subsidize only American companies," Liu stated. "Unlike Intel, TSMC is very positive about non-U.S. chipmakers expanding capacity in America. It is a great thing."

Both companies have big operations in the works, including TSMC's 3nm tech plans and reported manufacturing contract with NVIDIA for its RTX 40-series graphics cards.

Robert Carnevale

Robert Carnevale is the News Editor for Windows Central. He's a big fan of Kinect (it lives on in his heart), Sonic the Hedgehog, and the legendary intersection of those two titans, Sonic Free Riders. He is the author of Cold War 2395. Have a useful tip? Send it to