Japan Blocks China's Chips, Xi Jinping Fumes


Japan Blocks China's Chips, Xi Jinping Fumes

Japan has firmly positioned itself in aiding the United States (US) in its technological battle against China. The latest move involves Japan adding a new list of export bans to China, targeting 23 advanced semiconductor manufacturing equipment products.


Among these products is a crucial item used in circuit pattern production and chip testing. This step by Japan is expected to significantly impede China's maneuverability, as reported by Nikkei Asia on Monday (July 24, 2023).


Industry observers predict that Beijing will swiftly respond to Japan's new policy. "Producing advanced semiconductor devices will be extremely challenging for China in the short and medium term," stated Yoshiaki Takayama, a researcher at the Japan Institute of International Affairs.


Japan's decision follows the export ban previously imposed by the US on China in October last year. The US prohibited the shipment of artificial intelligence (AI) chips, citing concerns that China might exploit them for military purposes.


Since then, the US has encouraged Japan and the Netherlands to join in restricting chip exports to China, as these two countries are major producers of semiconductor manufacturing equipment in the world.


Notably, Japan serves as a primary supplier of chip manufacturing equipment to China. In 2022, one-third of China's total imports in this segment came from Japan, according to the International Trade Centre.


With Japan's firm stance and strategic export bans, the global technological race between major powers intensifies. China, known for its ambitions in advancing its technology sector, is now faced with greater challenges as it navigates through the semiconductor industry landscape. As the situation unfolds, the eyes of the world are on the escalating tech showdown and its potential ramifications for international relations.

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