Deputy Secy. of Commerce: Bipartisan Innovation Act will bring jobs, supply chain independence

DELMARVA – The Bipartisan Innovation Act has passed the United States Senate. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Don Graves tells 47ABC it could bring significant savings and jobs to Americans.

Make Way For Semiconductors

“The thing that we’ve been seeing over the course of the last two years is that semiconductors are absolutely vital to our every day life. They power our cell phones, our cars, the appliances we have in our homes. They power the equipment that our businesses use, that farmers need for harvesting and planting,” said Dep. Secy. Graves. “When we can’t produce those, and produce them as effectively and in the quantities that we need, it has a direct effect on the prices that consumers feel, whether it’s at the store or at their businesses.”

The legislation funds semiconductor manufacturing. That is why Dep. Secy. Graves says the Bipartisan Innovation Act could create thousands of jobs for Americans. “Years ago, the United States was the leader in production of semiconductors. Today we only produce about 12% of chips. We don’t produce any – 0% – of advanced chips,” he said. “The Bipartisan Innovation Act is about giving us the chance to become a world leader in semiconductors again. It’s going to give us the opportunity to invest in new fabs, these fabrications facilities that produce the chips.”

A Funded Future

Dep. Secy. Graves also tells 47ABC that a number of tech companies have already made commitments ahead of the legislation passing. For example, he says the CEO of Intel recently announced a $20 billion investment in Ohio. “We expect that that is going to increase significantly over the coming months and years as more semiconductor firms get this investment, which spurs additional investment for the entire business community,” said Dep. Secy. Graves.

Beyond that, Dep. Secy. Graves predicts that the ability to manufacture more semiconductors could make United States more resilient in the future. “Semiconductors are so prevalent today. When we don’t have the ability to control more of the semiconductor supply chain, it means that not only are we losing those jobs to other countries, but we’re seeing costs rise, based on that lack of supply,” he said. “When we can produce the chips, it means that we’re not as reliant on other countries. It means that when things like a pandemic or war causes geopolitical challenges and has an impact on our supply chains – it means that we’re not overly reliant on what’s going on around the globe.”

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