Japan and the Netherlands were tipped to be set to support aggressive new US trade restrictions on the export of advanced chipmaking machinery to China, adding to the nation’s woes in its efforts for chip independence, Bloomberg reported.
The news agency reported Japanese and Dutch representatives agreed in principle to the expanded curbs, with talks with US officials expected to close today (27 January).
Bloomberg noted Japan and the Netherlands are home to some of the top manufacturers of semiconductor making equipment.
The move would result in further restrictions on companies in the nations which currently still do some business with China: Bloomberg wrote Netherlands-based ASML would face export controls on some older deep ultraviolet equipment, adding to a current restriction on selling its most advanced extreme ultraviolet products.
Tokyo Electron, Nikon and others would face similar restrictions in Japan.
Richard Windsor, founder of research blog Radio Free Mobile, wrote that without Japan and the Netherlands it would be difficult to keep the Chinese from producing chips below 20nm, but added moves in China indicate many companies are already giving up on such production processes.
The new US measures added to previous export controls requiring domestic companies to secure an export licence for shipments of advanced technologies to Chinese businesses deemed a national security risk.
They are intended to prevent China’s military from accessing advanced US technology.
China filed a case against US chip sanctions with the World Trade Organisation in December 2022 and reportedly prepared a CNY1 trillion ($147.4 billion) package to support the domestic semiconductor industry.