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Japan seeks shot in the arm from TSMC to revive chipmaking sector

Declining production spurs scramble to keep suppliers competitive

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. has become a dominant force in the chip industry with the uncoupling of design from production.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- When Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. announced plans last month to build a research and development center 50 km northeast of Tokyo, companies in chip-related industries were thrilled by the prospect of the world's largest semiconductor maker arriving in the country.

But convincing TSMC to come to Japan was not easy, and the fraught process only underscored the plight of the country's own chipmakers.

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