Netherlands 'efforts to retain ASML'

ASML is said to be wanting to leave the Netherlands to expand production, forcing the government to find a way to keep the company here.

Reuters cited De Telegraaf (Netherlands) that the government is negotiating with the world's largest semiconductor equipment manufacturer ASML, which requires the company to ensure it does not move to another country or expand. foreign countries due to anti-immigration policies.

The source said ASML's plan is called "Operation Beethoven", in which the company is concerned about the business environment in the Netherlands, including tax breaks for foreigners and regulations on labor migration. Therefore, the company is considering options to expand abroad to increase production capacity.

ASML engineers operate a model EUV chip photolithography machine in Veldhoven, the Netherlands in November 2023. Photo: Reuters

For example, ASML plans to expand production capacity to 600 deep ultraviolet (DUV) lithography systems, 90 Low-NA extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography machines, and 20 High-NA EUV machines per year 2025 and 2026. If it only operates in the Netherlands, the company is concerned it cannot achieve the above goal.

Experts say ASML's importance goes beyond economics, as it is almost the only company that produces advanced DUV and EUV systems - tools that are especially important for chip production. . They are considered a " bottleneck " in the semiconductor industry because they have no competitors in the market.

Responding to Reuters , Dutch Economic Affairs Minister Micky Adriaansens said he would meet ASML CEO Peter Wennink in The Hague this week. "I don't know if they will leave the Netherlands or not," Ms. Adriaansens said. "They want to grow. That puts pressure on our infrastructure. That's why we're talking to them closely. Because we want to understand if this is what we have can be resolved or not.

ASML declined to comment.

ASML has also implied that the Dutch environment is becoming unsuitable. In January, Wennink warned that the company was relying heavily on highly skilled foreign workers. Meanwhile, the victory of anti-immigrant parties in the Netherlands in the 2023 election causes the company to face many human resource challenges.

In February, at an event in The Hague, Wennink also said he was concerned that the business environment in the Netherlands "is getting worse". "A number of factors have made us a great company. But now, we are pressured by those same factors," he said.

According to ASML statistics, 40% of the company's 23,000 employees are not Dutch. They also import components from around the world, then develop them in Veldhoven before shipping the final products to global chipmakers.

Some sources revealed that France could be ASML's destination.

ASML's $380 million chip manufacturing machine is assembled at Intel (USA).

The Netherlands restricts sales of advanced semiconductor manufacturing equipment 104
ASML shows off its $380 million photolithography machine for the first time 162
China criticized the Netherlands for restricting the export of chip making machines 66
The Netherlands banned ASML from selling a series of photolithography machines to China 129

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