China plans to support its integrated circuit sector as a strategically important industry over the next five years, aiming for over a fourth of microchips used in the country by 2015 to be made in China.
According to a Xinhua news agency report released on Saturday, Yang Xueshan, China vice minister of industry and information technology, unveiled the country's plan to boost the integrated circuit (IC) sector at a "state strategy" level over the next five years.
China also plans to produce a series of chips with independent intellectual property rights, the news agency added. Under the plan, development of about 30 percent of the IC products used by China's major whole-set enterprises would occur domestically, Yang said.
IC production demands intensive capital and technology. For example, designing a 45-nanometer IC requires 40 million U.S. dollars and building a 12-inch production line costs 2.5 billion U.S. dollars, said Xiao Hua, director of the information department of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).
Yang said that China lags far behind the United States, Japan, the Republic of Korea and other countries in providing state support to the sector.
China's IC producers are mostly medium-sized or small enterprises with limited funds and technology.
Yang said that China's relevant departments would support and coordinate IC production with linkages including research, manufacturing and marketing during the 2011-2015 period.