India’s semiconductor ambitions could see a major boost as Tata Group is looking to apply for the government’s semiconductor subsidy scheme.

Sources close to the Ministry of Electronics and IT told businessline that Tata is drafting a proposal which it could submit over the next 3 to 6 months. It is also exploring partnerships with technology partners overseas. 

Sources close to the Centre allude to the fact that the salt-to-information systems conglomerate is evaluating business plans across the value chain for semiconductors. In addition to the Centre’s subsidy, various State governments, including Gujarat, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, are wooing Tata with various sops. 

Last year, Tata Sons Chairman, N Chandrasekaran revealed the conglomerate’s plans to enter chipmaking. Part of Tata’s $90-billion tech bet will be dedicated to partnerships with chip manufacturers and potentially launching an upstream chip fabrication platform. However, Tata had not applied for the first round of semiconductor and display fab proposals to the Centre, which took place in 2022.

In an earlier interaction with businessline, Raja Manickam, Chief Executive Officer, TATA Outsourced Semiconductor Assembly and Test (OSAT), had said India should not depend on multinational companies to pursue its ambitions to become a hub for semiconductor manufacturing but should encourage local players to take the lead.

₹76,000-crore outlay

India Semiconductor Mission has an outlay of ₹76,000 crore for manufacturing, packaging and design units. However, it has been unable to dole out any of these subsidies for semiconductor fab. All of the five proposals announced to receive the outlay last year, fell through. American tech company Micron’s $2.75-billion project to set up a testing and assembly facility in Gujarat is the first major milestone for the Centre’s subsidy scheme for semicon. Although players such as Vedanta and Foxconn have expresses interest, the Centre is yet to announce if it has received a viable proposal for a semiconductor fab.