Jul 12, 2022 - Technology

Intel: We'll delay Ohio plant without federal funds

Illustration collage of a computer chip set amongst graphic shapes and close-up crops of a one dollar bill

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger warned the company will delay its $20 billion chip site in Ohio if Congress fails to pass a bill with $52 billion for domestic semiconductor manufacturing.

The big picture: It's the most explicit statement by Gelsinger about the consequences of the legislation being stalled, and comes after Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) put negotiations in jeopardy.

Driving the news: In an interview with Washington Post Live on Tuesday, Gelsinger noted that Europeans have moved forward faster with incentives than the U.S., even though the U.S. started earlier.

  • "There are real‑time consequences if this doesn't pass," Gelsinger said. "I know I will make a decision to delay our project in Ohio if it doesn't pass."
  • Intel previously delayed its groundbreaking ceremony and has warned that the speed and size of the plans are dependent on government funding.

Catch up quick: The Senate passed a version of the bill last year, with the House passing similar legislation earlier this year, but negotiations on a compromise between the two chambers have lagged.

  • In a tweet last month, McConnell warned that there will be no bipartisan deal on the chips bill as long as Democrats pursue a partisan reconciliation bill on climate change, taxes and energy.
  • Gelsinger said Tuesday he has asked General Motors CEO Mary Barra to pressure McConnell on the issue.
  • "Every Kentucky car distributor needs to be calling McConnell's office today, right, to emphasize that this cannot be a partisan football," Gelsinger said.

What's next: If Congress doesn't pass the bill by the fast-approaching August recess, the proposal faces even steeper odds as lawmakers turn their attention to the midterms.

  • "We are telling everyone in our congressional conversations, do not leave for August recess without this being done, Gelsinger said.

Go deeper: Chip makers warn Congress’ delay could threaten U.S. expansion

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