Two U.S. allies, Japan and the Netherlands, have agreed in principle to join with the U.S. to tighten export control of chipmaking equipment to China. The move is an effort from Washington to cut off the Chinese regime from accessing their cutting-edge technology.

According to Bloomberg, the two countries are expected to announce the chip curb in the coming weeks, adopting at least some of the same measures in the U.S.’s sweeping restrictions.

Washington unveiled strict sweeping measures on chip export controls to Beijing in October. 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.

The alliance on chip export control from the three countries would technically send a hard blow to the Chinese regime to purchase the equipment needed for its chip ambition.

Apart from American firms, Japan’s Tokyo Electron and the Neitehrlands’s ASML are the two critical players in making the sanctions effective.

Sanford C. Bernstein analyst Stacy Rasgon told Bloomberg, “There’s no way China can build a leading-edge industry on their own. No chance.” 

The news outlet last week reported that the Netherlands considered export bans on chipmaking equipment that could produce 14 nanometers or more advanced chips. This is an industry standard in semiconductor technology.

National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said on Monday, December 12, that the U.S. has consulted with its allies, including Japan and the Netherlands, over chip curbs exports to China. He and Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo have discussed with partners about the issue since the restriction announcement in October.

On Monday, China filed a dispute with the World Trade Organization over the U.S. chip restriction. It said the ban threatens the global supply chain’s stability.
According to Nikkei Asia, the U.S. has 12% of the global semiconductor market share, while Taiwan and South Korea each account for about 20%, and Japan has 15%.

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