Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) and Sony could make a joint investment of approximately JPY800 billion ($7 billion) into a chip factory in Japan, with the aim for operations to commence by 2024.

Citing sources, The Nikkei reported the two companies are considering establishing a plant in the Kumamoto Prefecture which will be focused on manufacturing semiconductors for camera image sensors, automobiles and other products.

As part of any joint set up, Sony will likely take a minority stake in a new company which will oversee the facility operations, and the move also reportedly has backing from the Japanese government.

The project would result in TSMC’s first chip plant in Japan, and the company has previously confirmed it was reviewing plans for the move.

It is unclear whether the step is linked to work by TSMC and more than 20 Japan-based companies on developing chipmaking technology.

TSMC has also focused efforts in creating a subsidiary in the US and reportedly establishing a plant in Germany, in an effort to meet growing demand in a highly-strained industry due to a global chip shortage which impacts the production in many sectors.