US consults Japan, Netherlands to limit chip exports to China

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A White House press aide watches US President Joe Biden, in quarantine following a COVID-19 diagnosis, virtually appear during a meeting with business and labor leaders about the Chips Act – related to US domestic chips and semiconductors

(Reuters) – The United States has been talking to its partners, including Japan and the Netherlands, to tighten chip-related exports to China, said Jake Sullivan, the White House national security adviser, said on Monday.

The Biden administration aims to cut off China from some semiconductor chips made anywhere in the world with U.S. equipment, in order to slow Beijing’s technological and military advances, bringing introduced a series of containment measures in October.

Sullivan’s comments came after a Bloomberg News report that the two countries had agreed in principle to engage in US-led technology export controls, citing people familiar with the matter.

Asked about the report, Japanese Trade Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said export control cooperation was formed during his phone call with US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, but declined to elaborate.

“I can’t go into details because this is a diplomatic exchange, but Japan has implemented strict export controls, based on foreign exchange and foreign trade laws in the spirit of international cooperation,” he said. with reporters.

In addition to several US equipment suppliers, Japan’s Tokyo Electron Ltd and Dutch lithography specialist ASML Holding (NASDAQ:) NV are the two key players needed to enforce the sanctions. , making their government’s adoption of restrictive measures an important milestone, Bloomberg said.

New restrictions could be announced in the next few weeks, it added.

A spokesperson for Tokyo Electron said the company was unable to respond because of regulatory issues in each country.

“We intend to continuously closely monitor the situation and address it appropriately,” the spokesperson added.

China is Tokyo Electron’s biggest market, accounting for 26% of chip-making equipment sales worth 1.94 trillion yen ($14.1 billion) in the year ended March.

For Japanese chip test equipment maker Advantest Corp, China is the second largest market, after Taiwan. Orders worth 189 billion yen came from China in the previous business year, accounting for 27% of total orders.

A spokesman for the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs declined to comment.

In another development highlighting the relationship between Tokyo and Washington, IBM (NYSE:) Corp and Rapidus, a Japanese-backed start-up chipmaker, announced a partnership on Tuesday aimed at producing the world’s most advanced chips in Japan by second half of this decade.

Dario Gil, the company’s US research director, said the two companies will work together to create IBM’s 2-nanometer node chip, which was announced last year.

($1=137,5500 yen)


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