On September 18, Infineon CEO Reinhard Ploss expressed concern about the tensions between the United States and China in an online interview with CNBC at the Singapore summit and said that Infineon is preparing for increased competition in the semiconductor space out of China.

Infineon is one of the largest semiconductor companies in the world and is a top player in automotive, power and security chips. In April, the firm completed its 9 billion euro (about $10.6 billion) takeover of U.S. semiconductor company Cypress.

“The geopolitical tension between the two superpowers (is) a big concern because we think we should not focus on countries, we should focus on the needs of our global society,” Ploss told CNBC during the Singapore Summit, which was held virtually this year due to the coroanvirus pandemic. 

“This needs cooperation — so the tech dispute we have is definitely a concern of different reasons but we are able to cope with it,” he added. 

Semiconductors play an important role in technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things. Most of the chips used in China today are imported, which makes it dependent on foreign suppliers to provide advanced semiconductors. “Semiconductor always has been a key element for China, a major import element, and the strategy to become autonomous on this sector always had been present and is being followed very strictly,” Ploss said, “and the current U.S.-China dispute has accelerated Beijing’s plans to develop the home-grown sector very significantly.” 

“We believe at this point, especially all the strength with the acquisition of Cypress will help us to make our business in China grow successfully but we always have expected an increased competition out of China and prepare ourselves for this. So this is nothing new,” he added.