In recent weeks, a global chip shortage has led to temporary shutdowns at the Ford Saarlouis Assembly plant in Germany, the Ford Chennai Assembly Plant in India, the Ford Louisville Assembly Plant in Kentucky, and the Ford Chicago Assembly Plant in Illinois, severely disrupting production and the supply chain. The problem has now prompted a group of 15 senators to seek help from the White House, according to Automotive News.
The group, which includes Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Republican John Cornyn, Democrat Sherrod Brown, and Republican Rob Portman, sent a letter to the White House warning that the global chip shortage is a huge threat to the country’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic as assembly lines across the world are being forced to shut down because suppliers are having trouble delivering semiconductors to automakers.
The senators also stated that “we believe that the incoming administration can continue to play a helpful role in alleviating the worst impacts of the shortage on American workers,” and urged the White House “to support efforts to secure the necessary funding to swiftly implement the semiconductor-related provisions in the most recent National Defense Authorization Act, which would boost the production of semiconductor manufacturing and incent the domestic production of semiconductors in the future.”
In the meantime, the world’s larger chipmaker – Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., and other major firms have pledged to increase production to help mitigate the problem. Taiwan Economy Minister Wang Mei-Hua will meet with the U.S. this week to discuss supply chain issues, but the White House has not yet commented on the matter.
Meanwhile, in addition to Ford, the chip shortage has also affected Volkswagen, Subaru, Toyota, Nissan, and Fiat Chrysler.