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2009 outlook gets brighter with 70 fab projects

Posted: 29 Aug 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:65am? 2009 bright industry outlook? foundry? fab?

A decline in global semiconductor fab equipment spending of 20 percent is expected this year, but a rebound of over 20 percent in spending is expected in 2009, according to SEMI's World Fab Forecast report. Driving this rebound is over 70 fab projects in the next year: 53 fab equipping projects and up to 21 construction projects for fabs.

In 2008, 300mm projects comprise 90 percent of all fabs equipment spending, while about 69 percent of all equipment spending accounts for 65nm and below technology nodes. Overall fab capacity for 2008 will hit 16 million wafers (in 200mm equivalents), said SEMI. This represents a growth of 9 percent compared to 17 percent capacity growth in 2007. In 2009, capacity is forecast to grow by 10 percent.

Memory makes up the largest share of total semiconductor fab capacity with a 40 percent share this year, followed by foundries with over 20 percent, and logic with 15 percent. In 2009, memory will slightly increase its share to 42 percent, while foundries and logic will remain at about the same share levels, noted SEMI.

There have been changes in spending on fab construction projects, according to the market research firm. Many projects have been delayed during 2008 with a decline in construction spending of -38 percent from 2007. However, SEMI noted that 2009 will show over 50 percent growth in construction spending when many of the delayed projects begin.

Over most of the past decade, Japan has spent the largest share of money on fabs equipping. This will change in 2009. SEMI forecast that Taiwan and South Korea will exceed Japan in fab equipment and construction spending. By 2009, shares in total spending throughout the Asia Pacific (excluding Japan) will hit 67 percent, up from 50 percent in 2006. This year, only four semiconductor companies spent over $1.5 billion. In 2009, the World Fab Forecast predicts twice as many will spend at that level.

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