Electronics exports seen nearing $50 B in 2022

Published January 27, 2022, 1:33 PM

by Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat

The country’s electronics and semiconductor industry has set a 10 percent growth target or $49.5 billion in exports from the estimated record exports of $45 billion in 2021 on robust global demand.

The Semiconductor and Electronics Industries in the Philippines Foundation Inc. (SEIPI) Board, which approved the target during their last Board meeting, has estimated that the industry’s exports reached $45 billion in 2021 or 3.87 percent higher than the pre-COVID 2019 performance of $43.32 billion.

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“The Board of Trustees evaluated the condition of the semiconductors and electronics industry at our last board meeting and together made an overall growth forecast of 10 percent for 2022,” said SEIPI Chairman Glenn Everett at the SEIPI General Membership Meeting and Partner of the Industry Awards.

“SEIPI is generally optimistic about 2022 growth,” said Everett.

Everett, however, said that growth this year will all depend on the improvements to inbound and outbound logistics, health of the population, and the continuing opening of the country.

Based on his presentation, the global semiconductor sales performance at the end of 2021 showed a significant year over year growth between 19 to 28 percent. The Philippine industry is highly dependent on the demand in the global market.

“In all regions, quite a healthy outlook,” he said.

According to Everett, the industry has reached a new annual record for total semiconductor sales and units shipped as chip makers have substantially ramped up production to address the high demand as shown by high global purchasing manager indices (PMI).

For instance, he cited data from World Bank showing that global PMI hovered around 54 for most of last year. “The rise reflects new orders, but it also records a lengthening of vendor leap times and increased stock holdings,” he added.

He said the scenario looked better than it actually is adding that

PMI in the manufacturing sector bounced back in October reaching an all time high of 33.6, the fastest accelerated pace of improvement on record.

Driving the growth this year are the emerging technologies that offer remarkable set of opportunities for people in the electronics industry from innovations in automotive industry, cloud computing, interconnectivity, and smart devices.

He also cited exciting solar power developments, which are already happening right here in the Philippines.

Everett noted that in 2020, global solar power sector saw 130 Watt gigawatts of installations, but which have been ramped up dramatically.

“This is an 18 percent year over year growth, and it looks like it is accelerating. So the advent of solar is really now and continue to grow quite a lot. There are new technologies and you see news, pretty much every day there are new lab developments,” he said.

New solar power technologies are also driving down costs down by as much as 90 percent in the last ten years.

In addition, efficiencies of solar power are increasing as new solutions are figured out. Also, many governments are providing incentives for individuals and companies to switch to clean renewable power.

Everett presented solar cells used in aircraft but which are made in Philippines by Maxeon Solar Technologies, which manufactures the so-called IBC or interdigitated back contact solar cells, which have the highest efficiency cells in volume production in the world.

“Maxeon is world leading solar technology is proudly produced here in the Philippines,” he stressed.

“It’s an exciting time to be in our industry,” said Everett adding “The growth of innovation in our industry, it creates a great opportunity for the Philippines.”

While there may not be many new investments from existing SEIPI members, Everett expressed optimism that the new technologies can open new opportunities for the Philippines to attract investment and bring these new technologies and investment into the already vibrant domestic industry.

 
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