White House report puts heavy focus on domestic chip production, R&D

biden holding wafer
In April, President Biden held up a wafer used in chip production, calling it "infrastructure." The 100-day review he called for into critical infrastructure has yielded a 250-page report released today. (Live stream)

The Biden-Harris administration called again for strengthening critical product supply chains, including boosting incentives for domestic semiconductor manufacturing and research.

A set of recommendations contained in a White House report were issued Tuesday as a result of a 100-day review ordered by the president in February.

The 250-page report, “Building resilient supply chains, revitalizing American manufacturing and fostering broad-based growth” includes a recommendation for Congress to support at least $50 billion in investments in domestic manufacturing of leading-edge semiconductors.

Separately, the Senate on Tuesday  approved a measure to include $52 billion in federal investment in domestic chip research, design and manufacturing.  The U.S. Innovation and Competition Act passed by 68-32 and now heads to the House. *

“We must build resilient and competitive semiconductor supply chains for the long-term,” the White House said in a summary of the report.“The U.S produces only six to nine percent of the more mature logic chips, which are severely impacted by the current shortage. The loss of production capacity threatens all segments of the semiconductor supply chain as well as our long-term economic competitiveness.”

Other recommendations call for providing consumer rebates and tax incentives to spur consumer adoption of electric vehicles. Congress should approve $5 billion to electrify the federal government vehicle fleet with U.S. made EVs and $15 billion for a national charging infrastructure.

Also, the report calls for financing assistance across the full battery supply chain and $50 billion in congressional funding for a Supply Resilience Program at the Department of Commerce.

To increase public investments in R&D, the report calls for investments in developing next-generation batteries, including solid state lithium-ion design.

Another R&D recommendation focuses on increased funding of advanced manufacturing technologies for continuous manufacturing and biomanufacturing of APIs (Advanced Pharmaceutical Ingredients).

Recommendations also include changes to labor laws to focus on critical product production. One measure calls for identifying U.S.-based production and processing locations for critical minerals.   Four separate departments in the administration provided recommendations: Commerce, Energy, Defense and Health and Human Services.

The report follows months of lobbying by the chip industry, including statements by top executives.  The Semiconductor Industry Association applauded the White House report call for federal investments.

“Semiconductors form the nerve center of America’s economy, national security and critical infrastructure,” said John Neuffer, SIA president and CEO, in a statement. He said he looks forward to working with leaders in Congress and the administration.

RELATED: Chip shortage: How soon is relief possible?

* This story was updated to include the Senate vote.