Vedanta and Foxconn for ‘Semiconductors Plant in India to Build Next Silicon Valley’

BENGALURU: Vedanta Group Chairman Anil Agarwal was in Bengaluru to meet Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai on Friday. A major discussion was probably over Vedanta and Taiwan’s chip giant Foxconn’s plan, announced in February, to invest $20 billion in chops and displays. Glass facility in India. In an exclusive conversation ahead of the CM’s meeting, Agarwal gave some pointers as to what he would be discussing.

Read in hindi: वेदांता और फॉक्सकॉन भारत में ‘अगली’ सिलिकॉन वैली बनाने के लिए ‘सेमीकंडक्टर प्लांट’ के लिए

My biggest priority is that India should reduce its imports. India imports 94% of electronics. The basic raw material for this is semiconductor and display glass. We both import, spending about $16 billion.

We (Vedanta) are in the business of glass, we make optical fiber. We also make display glass in Japan, Korea, Taiwan, we are the fourth largest in the world. So, it was natural that everyone wanted to be our partner in semiconductor manufacturing. We chose Foxconn because it is a $200 billion company.

We are moving very fast – the first is to identify the location. We have an independent committee which is going to all the states. We need to be closer to universities, infrastructure, water. It’s like creating another Silicon Valley – it will be a cluster. A lot of companies will come around the plant who will use our semiconductor and glass, because they will be much cheaper than importing.

Therefore, the states should have a vision that it will not be just a chip plant, but it will be a 20-year plan. The project is about $20 billion, but we’ll start with $10 billion to make both the display glass and the semiconductor in one place. At the end of the month, we’ll pin the location. We are still waiting for the report to come.

Representatives of Vedanta and Foxconn recently met the Maharashtra government.

Karnataka is in a favorable position. But they have not come up with any policy like the Maharashtra government has done. What is subsidy, what is the location, what is the condition of water. Karnataka is very keen, but we are waiting for the policy. Governments get scared because the subsidies are huge.

They wonder if they have the resources. But trust me, they will get 10x returns. And they should be clear with the approval of the cabinet, the policy cannot be changed when the next government comes. People don’t want to go to Andhra because they change their policy.

How much subsidy looking

About 60% (of the total cost). Some are coming from the center and some from the state. Taiwan provided 90% subsidies, today everyone – US, China – wants to take Taiwan only because it has semiconductors. I have no doubt that India will be in a position to get there.

But everyone has to stick together, focus on one thing, give space to the right people. Being close to universities is also very important. Because this business requires a lot of research.

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