Departures Podcast featuring CY Huang

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It was just three years ago when the Economist magazine ran a cover story on Taiwan, describing it as “the most dangerous place in the world.” With intensifying competition with China and deteriorating global security following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, there are many arguments that continue to support that negative outlook.

But that’s not the vision for CY Huang, a veteran investment banker with FCC Partners and an expert in the semiconductor industry. According to Huang, Taiwan benefits from its “Silicon Shield,” the principle being that as long as the world needs Taiwan’s dominant semiconductor production, Taiwan should be safe from foreign threats – though that level of security is tenuous and dependent on many other factors.

In this fascinating coversation with Robert Amsterdam, CY shares his perspective on the geopolitics of semiconductor production, how the new era of AI is driving demand for more high-end chips which can only be manufactured in certain locations, and the recent history of the island’s relations with the mainland.