US Department of Commerce Proposes $1.3 Billion in Funding for Global Foundries per CHIPS and Science Act

Author photo: Chantal Polsonetti
ByChantal Polsonetti
Acquisition or Partnership

The U.S. Department of Commerce (DoC) and GlobalFoundries (GF) have signed a non-binding preliminary memorandum of terms (PMT) whereby the DoC will provide approximately $1.5 billion in direct funding under the CHIPS and Science Act to strengthen CHIPS and Science ActU.S. domestic supply chain resilience, bolster U.S. competitiveness in current-generation and mature-node semiconductor production and support economic and national security capabilities. The proposed funding would support a new state-of-the-art facility, significant capacity expansion, and modernization of GF’s U.S. manufacturing sites in New York and Vermont that produce essential automotive, communications, and defense semiconductor technologies.  This announcement is the third PMT announcement the DoC has made under the CHIPS and Science Act. 

GF chips are fundamental to everyday applications ranging from blind spot detection and collision warnings in cars, to smartphones and electric vehicles that last longer between charges, to secure and reliable Wi-Fi and cellular connections. Shortages of some of these semiconductors caused major disruptions during the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in a particularly acute impact on the availability and price of a broad range of goods as well as the shutdown of automobile manufacturing sites. Currently, there are only four companies outside of China that provide current and mature foundry capabilities at the scale of GF – and GF is the only one of those companies that is headquartered in the United States. Part of the proposed funding is expected to support expanding the facility that houses a dedicated capacity corridor for General Motors, with whom GF entered into a strategic long-term supply agreement last year.  

The proposed GF expansion is expected to help advance U.S. economic and national security by increasing capacity, strengthening supply chain resilience, and onshoring important defense and intelligence technologies. With multiple facilities designated as Trusted Foundries by the Department of Defense, GF has a long history of supporting the U.S. The Department of Defense relies on GF chips for national defense uses, including satellite and space communications. GF chips also support broader U.S. technological leadership and discovery, such as the James Webb Telescope and the International Space Station. 

The approximately $1.5 billion in proposed CHIPS funding would be split across three projects: 

  • Malta, New York – New State-of-the-Art 300 mm Fab: The construction of a new, large-scale 300 mm fabrication facility expected to produce high value technologies not currently available in the U.S. The new facility is intended to leverage existing infrastructure to expedite the path from construction to production.

  • Malta, New York – Capacity Expansion for Automotive: The proposed expansion of the existing Malta, New York fabrication facility, which includes a strategic agreement with General Motors, to secure a dedicated supply of essential semiconductor technologies. This project would also support expanding domestic capacity for semiconductors that are used in the U.S. critical infrastructure base. This expansion, combined with the new 300 mm fabrication facility, is expected to triple the existing capacity of the Malta campus over the next 10+ years. These two projects are expected to increase wafer production to 1 million per year once all phases are complete.

  • Burlington, Vermont – Fab Revitalization: The revitalization of an existing fabrication facility in Burlington, Vermont, to commercialize new 200 mm technologies, creating the first U.S. facility capable of high-volume manufacturing of next-generation Gallium Nitride on Silicon for use in electric vehicles, power grid, 5G and 6G smartphones, and other critical technologies. The site will apply industry-leading sustainability practices, including use of 100% carbon-neutral energy and development of an onsite solar system to supply up to 9% of the site’s annual energy.

The proposed projects are estimated to create approximately 1,500 manufacturing jobs and approximately 9,000 construction jobs over the next 10 years. The PMT also proposes approximately $10 million in dedicated workforce development funding for GF to work with local workforce, education, training, and community-based organizations to provide GF with the facilities and construction talent they need now and in the future.

In addition to potential direct funding, the CHIPS Program Office would make approximately $1.6 billion in loans available to GF under the PMT. The total potential public and private investment for the combined projects would be approximately $12.5 billion. 


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