When you're a world-class company, you must serve the world. At times, that means working with governments to continue operations. Apparently, this is exactly what Foxconn, the world's largest contract maker or electronics, and TSMC, the world's top contract maker of chips, are doing.
"Both TSMC and Foxconn's Yonglin Foundation proposed to donate 5 million [BioNtech] vaccine doses to Taiwan," a government spokesperson Lo Ping-cheng said at a press conference, according to Nikkei.
Neither Foxconn nor TSMC will vaccinate their employees forcibly, but with a purchase of 10 million (SARS CoV-2) vaccines, they can make their operations easier. To some degree, this might ease chip supply shortages.
Manufacturers like Foxconn and TSMC tens of thousands of people, so it is crucial to keep them healthy. Foxconn and TSMC have rather different types of work environments, though. TSMC has people in its offices and cleanrooms. In contrast, Foxconn runs factories that make things like Apple's iPhones.
There is a huge difference, though. Being one of the world's largest producers of chips, TSMC cannot stop its operations without stopping Foxconn's operations, which is why both companies are needed for each other.
"Although it is a seller's market when it comes to internationally approved vaccines, if President Tsai and the Taiwanese people are willing to let me use my several decades of international connections and business experience, I should be able to make a breakthrough in buying the vaccines," Terry Gou wrote in a Facebook post.