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Semiconductor silicon wafer shipments lowest levels since 2001

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New silicon wafer shipment numbers from SEMI, graphically show the steep decline in semiconductor production since the third quarter of 2008. In the first quarter of 2009, total silicon wafer area shipments were 940 million square inches, a 34% decline compared to the previous quarter and 57% below first quarter 2008 shipments. According to SEMI Silicon Manufacturers Group, this is the lowest level in shipments since 2001.

"Clearly, difficult global economic conditions continued to have an impact on  wafer shipments in the first quarter of the year,” said Nobuo Katsuoka, chairman  of  SEMI SMG and director, SOI process Engineering Department for Shin-Etsu  Handotai  Co.,  Ltd. ”However, market conditions recovered after the bottom observed in the January and February period.”

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