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White House to Push Infrastructure Plan in Summit Meeting on Chip Shortage

04/09/2021 | 10:14am EDT

By Alex Leary

WASHINGTON -- Top Biden administration officials will meet with senior executives of Ford Motor Co., General Motors Co., Intel Corp., Alphabet Inc. and others to address the global chip shortage that has hobbled auto manufacturing and other industries.

The White House wants to use Monday's gathering as a platform for selling President Biden's $2.3 trillion infrastructure proposal, which is facing opposition from Republicans and the business community given that it relies on increasing the corporate tax rate.

The plan includes $50 billion for the American semiconductor industry, to help with factory building and research and design.

National security adviser Jake Sullivan will be among the participants, reflecting the strategic importance of semiconductors and longer term concerns about waning U.S. dominance in the industry.

In a statement Friday, Mr. Sullivan said the shortage "creates critical national security vulnerabilities" and "a perfect example of an urgent economic and national security priority for the Biden administration."

Also participating will be National Economic Council Director Brian Deese who said in a statement that the summit "reflects the urgent need to strengthen critical supply chains and strategically position the U.S. economy to lead the 21st century." Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo will also join the virtual meeting.

GM and Ford are among companies that have had to cut production for a lack of chips that go into software modules used to control everything from brakes to air bags.

More than a dozen other companies will join the meeting, with most expected to be represented by their chief executives or other senior leaders. They include Samsung Electronics Co., Dell Technologies Inc., Micron Technology Inc., Northrop Grumman Corp., Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., AT&T Inc. and Cummins Inc.

Support for the semiconductor industry has gained bipartisan support on Capitol Hill, with lawmakers pointing to fears over China's heavy spending on chip-making capacity, and Mr. Biden is seeking to harness that to advance his agenda. But some conservative groups have faulted the aid, saying chip makers shouldn't be federally subsidized.

Mike Colias contributed to this article.

Write to Alex Leary at alex.leary@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

04-09-21 1214ET

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
ALPHABET INC. 0.98% 2337.35 Delayed Quote.32.07%
AT&T INC. 1.19% 32.41 Delayed Quote.11.37%
CUMMINS INC. 1.90% 265.93 Delayed Quote.12.55%
DELL TECHNOLOGIES INC. 1.39% 99.77 Delayed Quote.34.26%
FORD MOTOR COMPANY 1.12% 11.74 Delayed Quote.32.08%
GENERAL MOTORS COMPANY 1.98% 58.72 Delayed Quote.38.28%
INTEL CORPORATION 1.22% 57.19 Delayed Quote.14.21%
MICRON TECHNOLOGY, INC. -0.41% 84.8 Delayed Quote.13.26%
MSCI TAIWAN (STRD, UHD) 0.86% 693.967 Real-time Quote.15.72%
NORTHROP GRUMMAN CORPORATION -0.79% 370.05 Delayed Quote.20.81%
SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS CO., LTD. 1.10% 82600 End-of-day quote.1.98%
TAIWAN SEMICONDUCTOR CO., LTD. -2.22% 48.5 End-of-day quote.-22.03%
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