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Semiconductor shortage could go on for 'a couple of years': Cisco CEO

Brian Sozzi
·Editor-at-Large
·2 min read
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Cisco Chairman and CEO Chuck Robbins is among a growing number of tech leaders that think the semiconductor shortage wreaking havoc on everything from auto production to computer making will be around for a while.

"I think that it will take a couple years [to address] simply because the demand is continuing to increase," Robbins told Yahoo Finance Live in an exclusive interview. "I think we see a few quarters of real stress in the supply chain, and we think that it will be more predictable. It may not be where we want it to be, but it will be more predictable."

Added Robbins, "We just got to fight our way through it."

The tremendous demand for computing equipment during the COVID-19 pandemic has placed major stress on the chipmaking industry. In turn, that has led to auto makers such as Ford and General Motors to cut production of highly profitable (and large chip consumers) pickup trucks. Meanwhile, computer makers have warned on potential shortages of notebook computers.

Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger echoes Robbins sentiment on the timeline of the shortage.

"I think it takes a couple of years," Gelsinger told Yahoo Finance Live. "We can't build fabs overnight, it takes a couple of years to get built up." Intel has committed $20 billion to build two new chipmaking plants in Arizona in a bid to address the crush of demand.

Now the government is looking to help address the matter, too.

President Biden said in late February he will push for $37 billion in funding to increase chip manufacturing in the country.

Said Gelsinger of the potential government support, "It's a major, major statement by the administration. The winds are flowing in the right direction."

Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and anchor at Yahoo Finance. Follow Sozzi on Twitter @BrianSozzi and on LinkedIn.

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