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Taiwan's chip industry under threat as drought turns critical

TSMC and UMC activate water-supply plans as reservoirs face depletion in 60 days

Chipmakers in Taiwan are worried that severe water shortages will disrupt their operations, potentially exacerbating a global chips shortage. (Photo courtesy of TSMC)

TAIPEI -- Taiwan's tech manufacturers fear their output is under threat from the island's worst drought in decades, risking more turmoil for global supply chains already strained by shortages of semiconductors and other key components.

Taiwan's government will on Thursday further tighten water use in several cities that are home to a cluster of important manufacturers. Plants in Taoyuan, Taichung, Hsinchu and Miaoli will have to cut consumption by up to 11%, on top of a 7% cut requested last month.

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