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White House set to host Google, Intel CEOs to discuss computer chip supply chain

President Joe Biden holds a chip as he speaks prior to signing an executive order aimed at addressing a global semiconductor shortage, in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 24, 2021.

Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

Chief executives from companies including Google parent Alphabet, AT&T, Intel and General Motors are set to participate in a White House virtual summit on Monday addressing the global semiconductor shortage.

The summit comes as the Biden administration embarks on a review of key U.S. supply chains, including those for semiconductors, high-capacity batteries, medical supplies and rare earth metals. The shortage of computer chips has implications for a range of industries, from producers of electric vehicles to medical supplies.

Automobile manufacturers like GM and Ford recently had to cut production estimates or extend downtime to deal with the shortage. The supply chain was initially compromised early in the Covid pandemic since a large portion of the world’s chips are manufactured in Asia, where the crisis first hit.

U.S. officials and lawmakers have underscored the potential security implications of the country’s reliance on other countries for semiconductors. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said in February that “semiconductor manufacturing is a dangerous weak spot in our economy and in our national security.”

As a matter of both economic and national security, the supply chain assessment outlined by Biden’s executive order from February seeks to check the “resiliency and capacity of the American manufacturing supply chains and defense industrial base to support national security [and] emergency preparedness.”

The White House has also said it seeks to review gaps in domestic manufacturing and supply chains that are dominated by or run through “nations that are or are likely to become unfriendly or unstable.”

Though the White House’s review does not mention China explicitly, the directive is likely in large part an effort by the administration to determine how reliant the U.S. economy and military are on a critical group of Chinese exports.

The virtual summit will be hosted by National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and NEC Director Brian Deese, joined by Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, according to the White House. Participants will discuss Biden’s American Jobs Plan and how to strengthen the U.S. supply chain for semiconductors, according to the White House.

Here is the full list of companies whose executives are set to participate in the summit:

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