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RIYADH: Toshiba, one of the largest computer manufacturers, said supply challenges for electronic components are likely to continue following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Bloomberg reported.

“The sense of shortages hasn’t changed at all,” Hiroyuki Sato, the head of Toshiba’s devices unit, said.

 “We expect the current tight supply will last until March next year.”

Ukraine is a major supplier of pure rare gases such as neon and krypton, both of which are essential for making semiconductors.

It also accounts for nearly 70 percent of the world’s neon gas capacity, according to TrendForce data.

While some chipmakers have downplayed the impact of disruption from the war, it’s “clearly not positive,” Sato added.

The company issued a supply warning in September, and Sato said the situation and outlook have not improved since then, according to Bloomberg.

“It’s been a year since prices of various inputs such as metals began rising, and we still can’t foresee when that trend will reverse,” he said. “We had to, and will need to, ask our customers to share the burden because no single company can absorb the whole impact anymore.”

Sharp, a Japanese multinational that designs and manufactures electronic products, said last month that Toshiba plans to bring forward investment to expand its semiconductor production this year and into the first half of 2023.

But that alone won’t be enough to overcome the chip shortage completely and the company may further increase its capital expenditure pace if needed, Sato said.

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