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Page 68 of 105

IPC COMMUNITY 69 SUMMER 2023 modern wonders, but they are useless without PCBs and the rest of the electronics package. No one buys just chips; they buy components and systems that contain chips. Unfortunately, the United States is even more dependent on over- seas suppliers for these components than they are for semiconductor chips. Luckily, the Biden administration seems to get it, and there are signs of hope in Congress as well. For example, in launching the first round of funding under the CHIPS for America pro- gram, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo announced that the U.S. will develop multi- ple high-volume "advanced packaging" facili- ties and become a global leader in chip packag- ing technologies. The week before that, Raimondo confirmed that some of the CHIPS Act funding will go to "smaller firms," including "circuit board companies." Several weeks earlier, the administration's year-long assessment of the ICT supply chain highlighted the importance of PCB fabrication and assembly and recommended that the DPA be used to bolster the strength of U.S. PCB man- ufacturers. Most recently, Reps. Blake Moore (R-UT) and Anna Eshoo (D-CA) reintroduced the Protecting Circuit Boards and Substrates Act, which would incentivize purchases of domestically produced PCBs and spur industry investments in factories, equipment, workforce training, and research and development. Thus, the U.S. government appears to be on the right track on this issue, although now we need leaders in Congress and the Executive Branch to ensure the follow-through. For long-term sustainable change that boosts the United States' economic and national secu- rity, a significant chunk of CHIPS Act funding should be earmarked for the advanced packag- ing and PCB segments of the electronics supply chain. The funding and leadership for a "sili- con-to-systems" approach must not fall victim to partisan political battles in Washington.

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