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Interdependence between Taiwan, China and the U.S., particularly in the tech industry, has deepened even as the prospect of cross-strait conflict rises.   © Illustration by Hiroko Oshima
The Big Story

How Taiwan became the indispensable economy

Tech companies fear war but struggle to leave the island

LAULY LI and CHENG TING-FANG, Nikkei Asia tech correspondents | Taiwan

TAIPEI -- Then-U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan last year sparked more than a diplomatic spat between Washington and Beijing. It triggered a tech industry crisis, which might now threaten the global electronics supply chain.

In the days after Pelosi's visit, Taiwanese suppliers to U.S. tech giants including Apple, Google, Meta and Amazon were inundated with requests from their customers. Could they produce from outside Taiwan to secure supplies, in case Beijing went to war over the island?

Taiwan is best known for making cutting-edge semiconductors. But its companies also turn out other crucial components from printed circuit boards to advanced camera lenses, and they run huge device assembly operations in China.

This has created a triangle of critical interdependence between Taiwan, China and the U.S  that has deepened even as tensions between Beijing, Washington and Taipei have risen.

Click here to explore the full story, a collaboration between Nikkei and the Financial Times.

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