The month prior Jensen Huang, CEO of GPU maker Nvidia, called for a simplification of supply chains in the automotive sector.

TSMC, or Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, is the dominant player in global chip production. Its fabrication plants build more than half the world’s made-to-order semiconductors, with chip designers such as AMD and Nvidia among its customers.

TSMC’s dominant position in manufacture – and its close proximity to China – has sparked political reactions in the US and the European Union. Earlier this year US President Joe Biden allocated $50bn to improve American chipmaking capabilities, and the EU has created a semiconductor alliance to improve competitiveness and “increase Europe’s digital sovereignty”.

But with fabrication plants, or fabs, taking years to construct and costing hundreds of billions of dollars, it is unlikely that TSMC’s supremacy will be challenged by such investment in the short term.

According to a GlobalData report, the semiconductor industry is “at the start of a 10-year reset in the wake of the pandemic, geopolitical turmoil, and the resulting global shortage”.

China too has invested billions of dollars into building chipmaking capacity – with mixed results.

Liu added that a softening of trade tensions between the US and China could help ease the chip problem: “The US and China need to understand that they may not be friends, but they are not enemies either. “We need common rules to … give people some expectation about how to do business.”