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Huawei achieves breakthrough in EDA tools for chips

By Ma Si | | Updated: 2023-03-24 13:35
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People gather at the Huawei stand during the GSMA 2023 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. [Photo/Agencies]

Huawei Technologies Co said it has successfully developed electronic design automation, or EDA tools, for chips above 14 nanometers process by partnering with domestic partners, marking a crucial breakthrough for China's semiconductor industry amid the US government restrictions.

Nicknamed the "cradle" of integrated circuits, EDA is software widely used in the sector and is of great importance to the entire process of designing chips.

Xu Zhijun, rotating chairman of Huawei, said the company has completed the localization of EDA tools above 14nm in the chip field and will complete comprehensive verification this year.

Huawei confirmed to China Daily on Friday that Xu made the remarks in a late February meeting.

China has long relied on US companies such as Cadence and Synopsys for high-end electronic design automation tools. EDA for 14nm chips are middle-end products, but it still marks a breakthrough.

The progress is part of a broader push by Huawei to develop domestic development tools for hardware, software and chips amid the US government's lingering restrictions.

Xu said the company has replaced 78 software tools affected by Washington's ban, which can basically ensure the continuity of its research and development efforts amid US restrictions.

Xu said that although the company has achieved many breakthroughs in product development tools over the past three years, it still faces formidable challenges.

Huawei will redouble its efforts to attract more global talents in order to achieve a strategic breakthrough in the area, he added.

Major Chinese insurance companies have also tailor-made insurance services to promote the use of domestically developed chip products such as EDA tools, people familiar with the matter told China Daily.

Such insurance services, which have already been used to support homegrown auto chip companies in 2021, can help Chinese semiconductor enterprises lower research and development costs, and accelerate efforts to achieve breakthroughs in core technologies, they said.

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