Chip Shortage Crisis: Biden Administration Urges Congress to Pass $52 Billion Spending Bill by Christmas

 Chip Shortage Crisis: Biden Administration Urges Congress to Pass $52 Billion Spending Bill by Christmas

Susan Walsh / AP

The Biden administration may not have gone into panic mode over the global microchip shortage, but there is certainly a sense of urgency — so much so that White House officials are practically begging Congress to pass a $52 billion spending bill before Christmas to save the country’s semiconductor industry and address a deepening crisis.

According to CNN Business, the bill, dubbed the CHIPS for America Act, would stimulate local chip production and research. The law was passed by the Senate over the summer, but the House has yet to vote on it, and the White House is growing impatient.

“We are imploring Congress to pass the CHIPS Act,” Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo told CNN. “It has to happen by Christmas. This cannot take months.”

She added, “This is a crisis now and it’s only going to get worse.”

Even if Congress approves the bill before Christmas, CNN reports that building and properly scaling up new semiconductor plants will take years. Meanwhile, the global chip scarcity, which is being exacerbated by COVID-19, is wreaking havoc on the economy, contributing to rising inflation, layoffs, and a delay in the manufacture of everything from iPhones to cars.

“Hopefully by this time next year or maybe a little before, the short-term crunch will be better,” Raimondo said. “The long-term issue will take years to sort out. We just don’t make enough chips in America.”

Although the United States used to be the world leader in semiconductor manufacturing, that hasn’t been the case in a long time. According to the Semiconductor Industry Association, only 12% of the world’s computer chips were created in the United States last year, down from 37% in 1990.

As per Gobankingrates, some businesses in the United States have opted to take matters into their own hands. As previously reported by GOBankingRates, Ford Motor Company recently announced plans to cooperate with chipmaker GlobalFoundries to increase chip supplies for its own vehicles as well as the greater American auto industry. The long-term goal is to increase chip production across the country, reducing reliance on third-party and foreign chip makers for American automakers.

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