AMD applies to open a new R&D center in Taiwan — partner program encourages cutting-edge processor design

(Image credit: AMD)

AMD has plans to open a research and development center in Taiwan, reports the Central News Agency. We have yet to officially learn the scale of the facilities planned or the amounts AMD is willing to invest. However, Taiwan’s Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) confirmed AMD’s application, which will be assessed under the auspices of the government's "A+ global R&D and innovation partnership program.”

The Taiwanese government wants to promote the island as a global R&D tech hub, which will be beneficial to its already established chipmaking prowess. To do this, the aforementioned partnership program is being used to target three major fields of innovation. Specifically, the Taiwanese are aiming to attract R&D in the fields of AI, an 5G, as well as high-power and high-frequency processors.

The partner program comes with other conditions. For example, AMD will need to bring in 20% of its R&D workforce from overseas, and it will also have to work with Taiwanese universities to culture new homegrown talent. If a firm like AMD can meet all the requirements of the program it will benefit from a subsidy worth up to 50% of its investments, says the CNA.

Interestingly, the news source said that it has heard from a government insider, tipping them off that AMD’s initial plans are to invest about NT$5 billion (US$155 million) in the new R&D center in Taiwan.

Of course, AMD already works closely with various Taiwanese companies and the R&D center could streamline communications and developments going forward. AMD CEO Dr. Lisa Su will be at Computex in early June, and is likely to be in discussions about this new partner project with Taiwan government officials.

Taiwan’s AI innovation and R&D center program opened its doors to prospective partners in 2020. Companies like Nvidia, ASML, and Applied Materials have already invested via this and similar programs.

The timing of this AMD news is somewhat interesting, coinciding with the inauguration of President Lai Ching-te (賴清德). Lai spoke about transiting Taiwan from a 'silicon island' to an 'AI island,' and also spoke to calm Chinese worries regarding any change from the ‘One China’ geopolitical status quo.

Mark Tyson
Freelance News Writer

Mark Tyson is a Freelance News Writer at Tom's Hardware US. He enjoys covering the full breadth of PC tech; from business and semiconductor design to products approaching the edge of reason.