Big things often announce themselves in small things.

When Ann-Marie Holmes throws the fourth picture of her PowerPoint presentation on the wall, the German delegation is uneasy.

The vice president of chip manufacturer Intel first introduced the company and then the factory in Leixlip near Dublin, Ireland, to state politicians from Saxony-Anhalt headed by Prime Minister Reiner Haseloff.

A complex of three factories.

They have been built over the past 30 years.

A fourth is now under construction.

The Americans' only plant in Europe so far is currently being expanded for 12 billion euros - and will not remain alone for long.

Stephen Finsterbusch

Editor in Business.

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At the beginning of 2023, the first excavators and cranes roll on a field near Magdeburg.

Canals have to be dug, roads laid, foundations poured, huge halls built.

Intel wants to build a second European factory complex on an area the size of a village just outside the state capital of Saxony-Anhalt.

A huge factory for the production of the smallest computer chips.

Initial investment 17 billion, expansion plans of 20 billion.

Dublin is kind of a role model.

Formerly chemical and heavy engineering

Prime Minister Haseloff has seen what's in store for him in Ireland these days.

"A lot of work," he will say later.

Work that he and his team landed in a Europe-wide tender.

He calls it a starting shot.

After reunification, the East was de facto de-industrialized due to its ailing economy.

"Now we're talking about reindustrialization," he says in an interview.

Research associations and a modern economy, good jobs and the best prospects.

"That's important - not just for Germany," he says.

Saxony-Anhalt used to be a chemical location and Magdeburg a center for heavy engineering.

Now the city and the state are betting on tiny chips.

The region wants to become a stronghold for semiconductors, the northern tip in the central German chip triangle with Erfurt, Dresden - with help from Brussels and Berlin.

Because semiconductors are important.

Without them, no wheel turns today.

Once upon a time, Europe was at the top when it came to semiconductors.

Today it's only second rate.

The EU Commission has just presented its Chips Act, a collection of industrial policy goals and special administrative rules.

Berlin allocates billions to the federal budget in order to attract investors and come up to par with the highly subsidized locations in Asia.

Intel is the first to make use of this, as the group sees itself in tough competition.

He has just been dethroned as a long-standing industry leader by Korea's Samsung Group and ousted as technology leader by Taiwan's TSMC.

$200 billion to catch up

Now Intel wants to move forward again with an investment offensive.

To this end, it will invest 200 billion dollars in the coming decade – in the USA, in Israel and in Europe.

Here, the Americans want to set up a test and packaging site in Italy for up to 80 billion euros, stretch a research network between Danzig and Paris, modernize the Dublin plant and build up to eight new factories in Magdeburg.

The first two are right on schedule.