More technology is needed – MaKenzie Jones | Letters to the editor

I would like to point out some information from Mike Cassling. We live and work in a technology-based economy. Technology infuses every aspect of our lives with improvements and advances that increase production, facilitate diagnostic calibrations, maintain efficient operations, and generate additional revenue opportunities.

In Nebraska, we know how the agricultural industry has benefited from technology through GPS, crop sensors, aerial imagery, drone operations and robotics. We should grow the technology here. Centrally located in the middle of the country with available land, good quality of life and low cost of living, Nebraska is the ideal state for technology growth. As the founding president of the Nebraska Tech Collaborative (NTC), I work with our organization to build a world-class technology ecosystem in Nebraska that attracts technology companies, attracts investments and creates technology jobs. The NTC has a goal for Nebraska to increase the number of tech jobs by 10,000 and the number of new tech companies by 300 by 2025.

To do this, we need a large, secure and reliable supply of semiconductor chips, which are the key ingredient that powers the technology that runs our economy. U.S.-based companies accounted for approximately 80% of all U.S. semiconductor wafer manufacturing capacity in 2021. Similar to so many other industries, however, our semiconductor manufacturing capacity has decreased over time and now we are heavily dependent on foreign manufacturers. Much of the world’s manufacturing capacity is now in Asia, which has recently caused massive supply chain congestion and, as Taiwan is a major supplier, raises concern over the threat posed by China.

However, semiconductor exports totaled $ 62 billion in 2021, ranking fifth among US exports. In fact, semiconductors made up the largest share of US exports of all electronic products. If the industry expands and grows, imagine how much those numbers would improve. Semiconductors are an American invention that formed an American industry. We need semiconductor chip manufacturing to thrive in America now and in the future.

To do this, our nation must invest and incentivize the industry. Right now, Congress has legislation stuck in the conference committee that would help build more production capacity. Negotiations are underway to produce a compromise bill that will pass both houses of Congress. For our domestic semiconductor industry to become even more competitive globally, the final version must include $ 52 billion in CHIPS Act grant resources and an investment tax credit that incentivizes the construction of new semiconductor facilities over the next decade. .

The US semiconductor industry accounts for a quarter of a million direct jobs in the United States and over a million additional indirect jobs in the United States. Every semiconductor manufactured in the United States supports nearly six more jobs in our economy, like the 10,000 tech jobs we will create here in Nebraska with the help of these two vital measures in Congress.

This is an opportunity for America, and it is also an opportunity for Nebraska. We need semiconductor chips to achieve our goal of creating a technology ecosystem in Nebraska. Congress must pass this legislation and empower the semiconductor industry to create jobs and opportunities for all. The Nebraska federal delegation should lead the way.

Mike Cassling is the founding president of Nebraska Tech Collaborative and CEO of Cassling, a customer-centric services and solutions company for imaging and therapeutic services and solutions.

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