Like all other SEMICON expositions, SEMICON West last month gathered thousands of people to make business connections and learn about the industry and its opportunities. But the events are also great venues for SEMI’s Global Industry Advocacy team to meet with industry leaders from around the world as well as regional SEMI presidents to discuss policy issues we face in each region and best practices for how to address them. The time was also ripe for us to meet with various advisory groups and advocacy committees to examine current issues.
Top on our list at SEMICON West was a discussion with SEMI’s International Board of Directors about the then newly announced actions by Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) to tighten export controls in trade with Korea. SEMI depends heavily on and is grateful for insights from its International Board, Board of Industry Leaders and various Regional Advisory Boards. They are crucial to our ability to develop and execute industry advocacy strategies that take into account regional idiosyncrasies, geopolitical sensitivities and global supply chain complexities. SEMI is unique in its ability to bring a global perspective to engaging governments around the world in real time. In the case of the trade dispute between Japan and South Korea, we engaged SEMI members in Japan and Korea as we developed our strategy.
On the SEMI America’s front, the North American Advisory Board and its Public Policy Committee met at SEMICON West for a spirited discussion on how to best manage our lobbying activities and how regional and U.S. companies should be involved. The committee’s perspectives and guidance will be invaluable as we chart a path forward in these challenging times in global trade.
Our Global Industry Advocacy team also continues to build out SEMI Works, SEMI’s comprehensive initiative to develop a talent pipeline and overcome the industry’s longstanding shortage of skilled workers. SEMI Works focuses on stimulating greater interest in STEM careers, aligning STEM course curriculum and industry needs, and connecting students with relevant courses and careers. We are in the process of launching three regional pilot programs that will enable us to develop the SEMI Works business model that we’ll use to scale the program and ensure the initiative is robust and sustainable. At SEMICON West the Global Advocacy team convened regional stakeholders involved in these pilots to share information on opportunities and challenges and to discuss various implementation strategies.
At SEMICON West we also facilitated meetings with U.S. government representatives aimed at improving cybersecurity in manufacturing and developing a commercial security model that will strengthen security throughout the supply chain in areas vital to industry growth such as traceability.
After nearly 50 years, SEMI still excels in enabling the industry collaborations key to growth and innovation. Collaboration is also a driving force within SEMI Global Industry Advocacy as we continue to work with SEMI members, our various boards and governments around the world to advance the interests of the semiconductor industry.
Mike Russo is vice president of Global Industry Advocacy at SEMI.