Taiwan’s unparalleled semiconductor industry produces one in every two silicon chips in the whole world, while 92% of the chips made with advanced manufacturing are Taiwanese.

We’re going to look back on the development of the industry, from its beginnings far behind rivals in Japan and Korea, to eventually surpassing them, that was partly thanks to a robust national strategy: the “integrated circuit development plan” of 1974, the government secured a vital technology transfer from the Radio Corporation of America, and ITRI sent experts to be trained in the U.S.

In 1980, the technology transfer project at ITRI evolved into United Microelectronics Corporation. Taiwan’s government recruited Morris Chang, a prominent silicon expert in the U.S., to lead the new corporation TSMC, this was the birth of Taiwan’s silicon industry.

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