WASHINGTON, D.C. (January 4) – The Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee approved a bipartisan bill introduced by U.S. Senators Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), and Rick Scott (R-Fla.) to strengthen federal efforts to expand domestic manufacturing of semiconductor chips. The Securing Semiconductor Supply Chains Act of 2021 would direct the U.S. Department of Commerce’s SelectUSA program – in collaboration with federal agencies and state economic development organizations – to develop strategies to attract investment in U.S. semiconductor manufacturers and supply chains. The bill now heads to the full Senate for consideration.
“Tennessee manufacturers rely on semiconductors to support local and global supply chains. The semiconductor shortages made it abundantly clear that we cannot continue to depend on Communist China for critical materials for manufacturing and producing American products,” said Senator Blackburn. “This legislation with Senator Peters will encourage economic development with local leaders to identify resource gaps and address challenges faced by Tennessee businesses in meeting their bottom line.”
“The ongoing semiconductor shortage has caused major disruptions for Michigan’s manufacturers and automakers, and exposed an overreliance on foreign producers that threatens our economic and national security,” said Senator Peters. “This bill will shore up our domestic supply chains by boosting our semiconductor manufacturing capabilities and driving investments in American manufacturing. This is particularly critical for our economic competitiveness on the global stage, as others such as the Chinese government continue to invest in research and development of new technologies. I’m pleased that the bill advanced in the Senate, and I’ll continue working to ensure it’s passed into law.”
“Commerce Committee passage of the Securing Semiconductor Supply Chains Act today is great news and an important step toward fixing America’s chip shortage that has had negative impacts on families, businesses and our national security,” said Senator Scott. “As Communist China’s aggression grows in this industry, the United States must become more competitive on a global scale and I thank my colleagues for their support of this important bill.”
The SelectUSA program was established in 2011 to improve federal efforts that attract job-creating business investments in the United States and support U.S. firms. This bill comes amid a report issued in June by the Biden Administration, which emphasized that the SelectUSA program could be leveraged to strengthen private-sector investments across the semiconductor-manufacturing supply chain.
The Securing Semiconductor Supply Chains Act of 2021 would direct the SelectUSA program to engage with state-level economic development organizations about how they are attracting foreign direct investment to onshore activities related to semiconductor manufacturing, and identify what resource gaps or other challenges they face in achieving that goal. SelectUSA would then be required to develop strategies to increase investments in semiconductor manufacturing.