Meeting Challenges and Scaling Growth with Semiconductors

Meeting Challenges and Scaling Growth with Ashok Chandak, President, IESA on manufacturing of semi conductors in India and the challenges associated with it

Archana Verma
New Update
Ashok Chandak

Ashok Chandak, President, IESA

Where does the manufacturing and meeting the demand of semiconductors in India stand today?


India is on an ambitious journey to become a global leader in the semiconductor industry. The government has approved a major investment, including a state-of-the-art semiconductor fabrication plant, which will break ground this year. This plant is a joint venture between Powerchip Semiconductor and Tata Electronics, capable of producing chips at 28 and above nanometer technology nodes. Additionally, several more proposals are in consideration at MeitY from International Semiconductor Consortiums. 

India’s drive for semiconductor self-reliance is part of a broader vision to reduce dependence on imports and establish domestic manufacturing capabilities. The Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme for electronics manufacturing is one such policy aimed at boosting domestic production. The semiconductor consumption in India is growing at a rate of 15% annually, which indicates the critical need for increased domestic production to meet the rising demand.

What are the challenges in this direction and how does IESA plan to meet these challenges?


The semiconductor industry in India faces several challenges, but with strategic planning and support, these can be addressed. Some of the key challenges that the industry faces are –

Infrastructure Establishing semiconductor fabrication facilities requires significant space, a reliable water supply, and uninterrupted power.

Skilled workforce There is a need for highly skilled engineers and researchers in the semiconductor industry.


Supply chain A robust supply chain is vital for semiconductor manufacturing with regards to materials, chemicals, gases and other value chain intermediaries.

Research and development Continued innovation is key to staying competitive in the semiconductor industry.

Investment The industry requires substantial capital investment and faces complex regulatory processes.


Market uncertainty The sector must navigate market uncertainty, changing consumer demands, and sustainable disposal of hazardous waste.

IESA is steadily working to overcome these challenges. Some of the steps that we have taken are -

SemiconIndia FutureSkills Programme This program engages over 65 colleges and more than 1,500 students each year, providing practical learning and skill-building opportunities. It's a foundational effort in cultivating a workforce that meets industry demands and encourages innovation within the semiconductor field.


Policy Advocacy IESA's targeted advocacy has been crucial in shaping a supportive regulatory framework for semiconductor research, design, and manufacturing in India, fostering sectoral innovation and expansion.

Indo-Dutch Semiconductor Collaboration This partnership promotes joint research and development, intellectual property exchange, and reciprocal investments with the Netherlands, hastening semiconductor progress through global collaboration.

MOUs with Global Semiconductor Organisations Agreements with global entities such as SEMI, SIA and FICCI have allowed IESA to tap into worldwide knowledge and resources, enriching India's semiconductor ecosystem with valuable insights and prospects.


By addressing these challenges with a comprehensive approach that includes infrastructure development, talent nurturing, and international collaboration, IESA aims to position India as a significant player in the global semiconductor market.

What is the scenario of investment for R&D and manufacturing of semiconductors in India?

In India, the investment landscape for semiconductor R&D and manufacturing is witnessing a significant upswing, buoyed by both government initiatives and private sector engagement. The government has earmarked a substantial INR 2,30,000 crore to catalyze India’s ambition of becoming a global electronics manufacturing hub, with a special focus on semiconductors. A notable portion of this, INR 76,000 crore, is dedicated to nurturing the semiconductor and display manufacturing ecosystem and major chunk has been earmarked for the Research and Electronic Development fund.


The R&D domain is also receiving heightened attention, with increased investments aimed at fostering indigenous semiconductor design capabilities.

How is the technology of semiconductors evolving?

There are several ways in which the semiconductor research and manufacturing is evolving –

Material innovation beyond silicon – The dominance of silicon as the primary semiconductor material is being challenged. Research into alternative materials like gallium nitride, which offers superior electron mobility for high-frequency applications, and germanium, with its potential for faster processing speeds, is accelerating. Additionally, exploration into materials with unique properties for emerging technologies like spintronics is ongoing.

Heterogeneous integration for enhanced functionality – Modern chip design embraces heterogeneous integration, where disparate components like central processing units (CPUs), graphics processing units (GPUs), and memory are combined onto a single chip. This necessitates advancements in packaging technologies to ensure seamless communication and optimal performance between these integrated elements.

AI-driven design optimisation – Artificial intelligence (AI) is transforming chip design. By automating repetitive tasks and optimizing chip layout for superior performance and power efficiency, AI is becoming an indispensable tool for engineers

India is set to assume a crucial role in this renaissance of the semiconductor technology. The Indian government's mission to invigorate local semiconductor production is laden with vast prospects. Additionally, the advent of technologies such as AI/ML, 5G/6G, and widespread digitalization is revolutionising various sectors. IESA is strategically positioning itself as a pivotal entity that unites stakeholders to seize these emerging opportunities. It champions the semiconductor mission by advocating for supportive policies, fostering collaborations and drawing investments.

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