According to Nikkie Asia, top Chinese chipmaker Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp. (SMIC) on Friday said U.S. export control curbs are making its U.S. customers “hesitant” to buy products from the firm. 

Zhao Haijun, SMIC’s co-CEO, said, “We are working very closely with our customers to clarify the impacts of the new U.S. regulations. Some of our [U.S.] customers are hesitant [about placing orders] at the moment.” 

Zhao added that his firm was forced to slow down some operations, including reducing wafer production.

The CEO said, “The global chip ecosystem has been interfered with and disrupted by the U.S. export controls.” 

Nikkie Asia reported that SMIC warned it sees no sign of recovery for the semiconductor market, as a shrinking demand and the “correction” period will probably extend beyond the first half of 2023.

According to the South China Morning Post, SMIC said the sweeping U.S. export control rules would hurt its production. The company is now evaluating more in detail the impact of those measures on its business operations.

It said, “sluggish demand in the smartphone and consumer electronics sectors, coupled with the need for some customers to take time to interpret new U.S. export control regulations, [means that] fourth-quarter revenue is expected to decline 13% to 15%.”

Last month, Washington unveiled strict measures on chip export controls to Beijing. The restrictions aim to cut off China’s access to chips used in artificial intelligence and supercomputing that the regime exploits to build its chip industry and enhance its military.

Later, sources from Bloomberg said that the U.S. also seeks to expand restrictions on export controls to prevent the Chinese regime from accessing its most powerful computing technologies. This early-stage plan is designed to restrict the still-experimental field of quantum computing and artificial intelligence software.

In addition, Washington is lobbying allies to join its lead on export-control measures, restricting advanced semiconductors for the Chinese regime to prevent Beijing from gaining key technologies that threaten its technology dominance.

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