SEMI: Semiconductor equipment companies expect sales of US$32.95B in 2005 December 8, 2005 – The leading manufacturers of semiconductor equipment project 2005 sales to reach $32.95 billion, according to the year-end edition of the SEMI Capital Equipment Consensus Forecast, released by SEMI at the annual SEMICON Japan exposition. The forecast indicates that, following the robust 67% market expansion in 2004, the equipment market will decline 11.2% in 2005. Survey respondents see the market growing at a single-digit rate in 2006 and resuming double-digit growth over the following two years to reach $46.63 billion in 2008. “Capital spending in 2005 reflects an anticipated cyclic decline following the very high investment levels of the prior year. However, this remains the third strongest year for worldwide semiconductor equipment sales,” said SEMI president and CEO Stanley Myers. “Furthermore, SEMI members expect the equipment market to continue posting sequential gains over the next three years as chipmakers continue to invest in 300mm fabs and 65nm technology.” The SEMI Year-End Consensus Forecast indicates that the final manufacturing equipment segments will experience the sharpest declines this year. Survey respondents anticipate that the market for assembly and packaging equipment will contract 19% to $1.99 billion in 2005. The market for equipment to test semiconductors is expected to decline about 17% to $5.27 billion this year. Wafer processing equipment, the largest product segment by dollar value, is expected to decline nearly 10% in 2005 to $22.97 billion. The Japanese market, which grew more than 49% last year, remains the largest market region for worldwide equipment sales with $8.04 billion of new equipment sold into the region in 2005. South Korea stands out as the only expanding regional equipment market in 2005, with growth of almost 28%. Sales of new equipment in China and the rest-of-world market regions will decline 54% and 35%, respectively. SEMI’s forecast is based on interviews conducted between late October and November 2005 with companies representing a majority of the total sales volume for the global semiconductor equipment industry.