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Intel picks Greater Columbus for what could be the world’s largest semiconductor operation

A semiconductor

Ohio has landed what might be the world's largest semiconductor plant.

Intel, headquartered in Santa Clara, California, plans to invest $20 billion in Jersey Township, Licking County, to build two computer chip facilities, making it Ohio's largest economic development project to date.

The factories, known as fabs, will employ 3,000 people with an average annual income of $135,000 each.

The project is estimated to generate 7,000 direct and 10,000 indirect jobs.

The project promises to bring fresh clout for Ohio as a major player in economic development.

The project, which will be Intel's first new production site in 40 years, could eventually include eight plants and $100 billion in investment from Intel and its suppliers and partners over the next decade.


Construction jobs will begin this year, with the first chips slated to be manufactured in 2025.

In a letter delivered to Gov. Mike DeWine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted on Christmas Day, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger and Senior Vice President Keyvan Esfarjani said, "Ultimately, we aspire to construct the largest semiconductor production site on the planet."

"They have sensed their passion and a strong commitment to not only help Intel grow in your state, but also to help promote semiconductor research, development, and production in the United States, according to the letter.

"This is a long-term strategic investment that will assist Ohio to attract our sector."

"That gave us a really great Christmas present."

DeWine added the project is to this generation of Ohioans what Honda was to those in the 1980s.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine

He said: "It has so many repercussions that you can't define them."

"If you're a CEO, you'll wonder why they're heading to Ohio.' I better check them out.'

The plants will be built on 1,776 acres of the 3,190 acres in Licking County that New Albany is annexing from Jersey Township.

Intel will use 926 acres, with the option to expand to 1,500 acres, according to Mr DeWine.

Suppliers will also have access to another 250 acres.

Around 30 Intel-supplier companies are scheduled to open businesses at the site, resulting in the creation of even more jobs.

Roughly 140 firms in Ohio currently supply Intel.

Air Products, an industrial gas supplier based in Allentown, Pennsylvania; Applied Materials, a semiconductor materials firm based in Santa Clara, California; equipment supplier LAM Research, based in Fremont, California; and Ultra Clean Technology, a contamination control company based in Bridgeton, New Jersey, are among those that have announced their intentions to establish a presence near Intel.

Officials from both the state and the firm have yet to reveal what economic incentives are included in the contract.

Intel has also committed $100 million to relationships with local educational institutions, including Ohio universities, community colleges, and the National Science Foundation, in order to create a workforce capable of delivering what the corporation and its suppliers will require.

Kristina Johnson, Ohio State University president, said: "It's a perfect fit for Ohio State and our fellow higher education institutions to collaborate on this game-changing investment in semiconductor manufacturing."

Source: The Columbus Dispatch

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