Building The Semiconductor Industry in Nigeria

Building The Semiconductor Industry in Nigeria

 A very simple logic: demand is high, why not work to provide more supply? That is business and economics 101. So, the postulation by John Mc Keown that Nigeria could go into microfabrication business to take advantage of the broad high prices of chips, while a good call at superficial level, will certainly struggle at a deeper level.

First, the condition precedent for Nigeria for a chip factory is not there. Yes, we cannot run a foundry with generators. Secondly, our universities are not there to produce the knowledge workforce to design chips and fabricate them. Thirdly, the comparative advantages are against Nigeria with silica, etc (be at least as good as TSMC to have opportunities in markets). You can add more challenges.

This is what Nigeria needs now in the semiconductor business: a clone of MOSIS. MOSIS is a service funded by the US military research unit which connects all universities and small chip design companies together, making it easier for people to create prototypes at largely zero cost. So, magically, a Stanford student can design a chip and send it to MOSIS and within 3 months will get five samples. Through MOSIS, the US government took out the burden of schools needing to build  $1 billion factories, and got them to focus on designs.

And when your prototype is fine, you can then raise money to send the chips to TSMC, Global Foundries, etc. But that first phase is always on the bill of the government. Canada has an equivalent of that. China copied that model. Brazil did the same. My roadmap on that was the basis of my book which received a huge award.

[Book Presentation] IGI Global 2010 “Book of the Year” Award Book Will Be Presented in University of Nairobi

Nigeria needs to nurture chip designers: once that is done, fabricating chips will make sense.

As TSMC Hikes Chip Prices, Is It Time for Public-Private Partnership In Nigeria To Create A Chip Foundry?


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One thought on “Building The Semiconductor Industry in Nigeria

  1. Indeed, although I expect Africa to have a foundry before 2035, It would have to take baby steps before it gains the strenght to run, else we keep falling.

    We did EEE205 earlier this year, it was tough, many struggled and that why I asked you on how you passed with an A. Simply it not something enjoyable when it abstract,even the lecturer had to travel to Swansea to have his Masters.

    While Knowledge sharing would be of advantage we need to be serious about the pushing quality knowledge here, although I know it very expensive.

    Good Evening.


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