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  US NRI consortium may set up unit in India
  Sep 15, 2005

Chennai : Indian Equipment Manufacturing Company, a US-based consortium of NRIs, is considering setting up a semi-conductor fabrication unit in the country, the Union minister for communications and IT,
Mr. Dayanidhi Maran said here on Thursday.  He said that he had discussed this with them when he was on a visit to a manufacturing facility in Silicon Valley in the US. The project is estimated at $3-4 billion. Mr Maran said the setting up of the fabrication unit would be a value addition to the country and make the country self-reliant on this front.


Mr Maran said the Union government has given an “in-principle” letter for the project once the proposals get finalised. He added the government would partake in the investment in the project on an equity basis.  The minister added that he expected the consortium to come out with a concrete proposal in three to four months. Mr Maran was in the city to inaugurate the country’s first environment friendly lead-free plating process at SPEL semi-conductor Limited at Maraimalai Nagar near Chennai.


SPEL is India’s first IC assembly and test facility. India already has a chip design and assembly testing facility and the only missing link was the non-existence of a fabrication unit, Mr Maran said.  Speaking about the newly-installed lead free plant Mr Maran said, “This is a high-end futuristic plant where chips of 50 nanometre size will be made and could upgraded in the future to produce chips of 35 nanometres.”


He also said the units in Hyderabad and Bangalore are low-end plants that manufacture chips of 250 nanometres, which is bound to become outdated soon adding that the new facility in Chennai has been developed with a futuristic vision. The vice-chairman, Mr Arun, said that SPEL Semi-conductor Limited is looking at a target revenue of $100 billion by 2009-10 and is also planning to double its capacity to 330 million units.

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