National Semiconductor to build plant in China

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Santa Clara, Calif.--National Semiconductor Corp. said Thursday that it will build its first plant in China, becoming the latest chip maker to expand into an estimated $10 billion market. The company now joins rival chip makers such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. in boosting investment in the world's third-biggest semiconductor market. China's annual chip production is projected to reach 20 billion by 2005, with demand for more than 70 billion chips, according to technology industry ministry estimates. National Semiconductor, which sells about 45% of its computer chips to companies such as Samsung Electronics Co. in Asia, will spend as much as $200 million over the next five years to build and staff the plant in eastern China's Jiangsu province to test, assemble and package chips, the company said.
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