The main semiconductor industry trade group affirmed its 2003 sales growth outlook after reporting respectable worldwide numbers for May.

The semiconductor industry association said global chip sales were $12.5 billion last month, a 2% rise from $12.26 billion in April and a 9.9% increase over May 2002's $11.38 billion.

"SIA's forecast growth of 10.1% for the year 2003 is on track, with this uptick in May," the group said. "As SARS and the geopolitical issues come under control, we expect to see demand in all geographic sectors, especially China, strengthen in the second half of the year."

The SIA currently expects worldwide sales of semiconductors to rise 10.1% in 2003, 16.8% in 2004, 5.8% in 2005, and 7% in 2006, and for sales to grow from $141 billion in 2002 to $205 billion in 2006.

Sales of programmable logic and standard cell chips increased 8.6% in May from a year ago, while flash memory was up 4.4%, ASSPs were up 3.7%, DRAMs up 2.5%, and optoelectronics up 6.3%.

By region, sales in Japan rose 26% in May from a year ago, Asia Pacific was up 11.7%, and Europe was up 9.3%. Sales in the Americas declined by 6.7%, reflecting Asia outsourcing.

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