Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD
The Battle for the Future Will Be in the Semiconductor Industry
by: Christopher H. Loo, MD-PhD
The United States emerged as the world’s superpower after World War II, as a result of a series of fortuitous events that helped the country capitalize on the post-war boom.
England and Europe were decimated from the war.
During the Information Age, the battle is over information, platforms, brands, innovation, intellectual capital, and technology whereas in the past, the battles were fought over land, oil, gas, and natural resources.
The countries that benefited the most were the United States, Russia, and now China.
Now it is all about:
Which country produces the best and brightest?
Where is all of the talent going?
Who is leading the front on innovation?
The battle has changed from the military-industrial complex to a more nebulous battle being held in cybersecurity, cyberspace, artificial intelligence, blockchain, financial, economic, space, and technology.
In Chip Wars: The Fight for the World’s Most Critical Technology, Chris Miller discusses this insightful observation by looking at the semiconductor and microchip industry, and its role. The next battleground will be the fight for this critical piece of technology.
Every sector from the government, military, healthcare, technology, and businesses are dependent upon this critical piece of technological infrastructure from computers, laptops, smart phones, automobiles, and airplanes.
Everything from gaming, quantum computing, financial sectors, blockchain, artificial intelligence, and AR-VR-MR will depend heavily upon semiconductors and micro-chips.
Data will be the new "oil" and microchips will be the new "real estate" upon which future technology and innovations will be built upon.
The winner of this next wave will be whoever controls the semiconductor and microchips industry. In 2021, China’s imports of semiconductors exceeded those of oil. It bought more than $430 billion in semiconductors, 36% of which came from Taiwan.
The majority of Taiwan semiconductor production goes into devices made for foreign firms that are then exported to the world.
If China controls Taiwan, they will control the supply chain dynamics to a large portion of the world including the United States.
Factor this in supply shocks from COVID. Huge global implications.
It is the reason why the United States is paying so close attention to Taiwan.
Is is the reason why Biden signed the CHIPS and Science Act this year to improve investment in this area.
The country who wins the next innovation battle will be the country that controls this central piece of technology.
It will be extremely interesting to see how this plays out.
Christopher H. Loo is a retired physician and founder, Financial Freedom for Physicians. He became financially free at the age of 29, and retired early at the age of 38, as a result of making strategic investments after the 2008 financial crisis. A graduate of the MD-PhD program offered jointly through the Baylor College of Medicine and Department of Bioengineering at Rice University, he is the author of “How I Quit My Lucrative Career and Achieved Financial Freedom Using Real Estate”, and is the host of the Financial Freedom for Physicians Podcast. He is a regular contributor to KevinMD and has spoken about the importance of financial literacy for Passive Income MD, the White Coat Investor, Board Vitals, SEAK Non-Clinical Careers, SoMe Docs, Doximity, Medpage Today, FinCon, and other high-profile financial brands geared towards high-income professionals. He is passionate about the role that crypto, fintech, and innovation will play in enabling financial freedom, economic inclusion, access and opportunity for the entire world in the upcoming decades.