US chip ban on China: the US to release a blacklist of Chinese chip factories

The US government is expected to release a list of Chinese chipmaking factories banned from receiving tech in an attempt to help US compagnies identify them and thus comply with existing restrictions.

 Electronics, Hardware, Computer Hardware, Printed Circuit Board

The US government is finalising a list of Chinese chipmaking facilities that are specifically targeted by export restrictions. This list is designed to assist companies in complying with US measures aimed at restricting the transfer of advanced semiconductor technology to China. The initiative is informed by consultations with industry insiders and is expected to be publicly released in the upcoming months.

Background and Implications of 2022 Restrictions  

In 2022, the US Commerce Department imposed restrictions on American firms, prohibiting them from supplying equipment to Chinese entities engaged in manufacturing advanced semiconductor chips, which triggered in response a surge in smuggling and transhipment activities. Additionally, these restrictions boosted domestic chip manufacturers in China, such as SMIC. This raises the question of the efficacy of the existing US export controls on China prior to the implementation of further restrictions.

International tech export control  

 his move is part of a broader strategy to curtail China’s technological progress in areas deemed sensitive to US national security. The US strategy relies in part on allied export control in order to contain China’s military and high-tech growth. Japan and the Netherlands joined the attempt to limit China’s access to minerals used to create advanced computer chips, but are now reluctant to move forward with their restrictions until they can assess the effectiveness of the current ones. 

Challenges in identification 

The semiconductor industry has reported difficulties in determining which Chinese facilities are involved in the production of advanced chips, complicating efforts to comply with US restrictions. US officials recognise the industry’s need for more clarity regarding these restrictions. While the upcoming list is not expected to be exhaustive, it aims to identify facilities that pose significant concerns to US national security interests.