Continued investment in electronic chip design
The European Commission wants to invest in the next generation of chips. We fully support this and would like to emphasise that Moore’s Law will remain in force for the coming decades: there is still plenty of room for innovation in analogue and electronic chips. We see photonic chips often described as ‘the next generation of chips’, but photonic systems will always need an electronic chip for their computing power and their connection to applications. They are therefore not the successor to electronic chips but an interesting extension. Unfortunately, in the Netherlands microelectronics is not designated as a key enabling technology by the Ministry of Economic Affairs. As a result, much less money is available for (fundamental) research. It remains necessary to invest in research projects and to educate the necessary talent. If we do not reinforce (or consolidate) our position now, we will lose out in the future. Within the EU Chips Act, much attention is paid to solving chip shortages. We are not going to solve that problem in the Netherlands in terms of production, but if we do not strengthen chip design talent, we will not be able to solve the chip shortage in Europe at all. Investing in electronic chip design and fundamental and applied research is therefore an absolute must. By investing in this, we largely guarantee our independent position in Europe.