Contract chipmaker TSMC confirms US foundry plans, denies Apple connection

Contract chipmaker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) has confirmed it is looking to build a foundry in the US, but has denied the new facility would be used to manufacture chips for Apple.

Late last week, SmartCompany reported the US state of Oregon was in talks with an organisation codenamed Project Azalea to build a semiconductor foundry, prompting speculation about a possible link to Apple.

TSMC manufactures processors under contract from a number of chip design firms, including Qualcomm and NVidia, while Samsung currently manufactures Apple’s processors.

According to the Taipei Times, TSMC CEO Morris Chang says his firm is investing around $US9 billion in new capital expenditure next year to catch up with global demand for 28-nanometre chips used in smartphones and tablets.

The US is one of the places under consideration [for a new foundry]. But this has nothing to do with Apple,” Chang says.

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