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HomeTechNetherlands to restrict export of 'advanced' chip-making tech to China

Netherlands to restrict export of ‘advanced’ chip-making tech to China


Following similar moves from the US, the Dutch government is moving forward with plans for new restrictions on the export of advanced chip-making technology to China, which are expected to affect the production of advanced logic and DRAM modules.

The Dutch export restrictions have been in the works for some time and on Wednesday the Dutch government published more information about its plans.

“These new export controls target advanced chip manufacturing technology, including the most advanced deposition and immersion lithography tools,” said an announcement by Dutch-based ASML, a leading global manufacturer of semiconductor manufacturing equipment.

As geopolitical tensions between the US and China escalate, the administration of US President Joe Biden has implemented controls on exports of semiconductor technology to its main superpower rival, to curb the development of advanced technology that could be used for military modernization and human rights violations. The US has also been pressuring its global allies to do the same.

Export controls threaten the global supply chain

The The chip war between the US and China puts international companies in the crosshairsas disruption to the semiconductor supply chain can impact a wide range of technology and consumer goods.

In a statement on Wednesday, Dutch Trade Minister Liesje Schreinemacher said new Dutch export restrictions would affect “very specific technologies in the semiconductor manufacturing cycle,” according to a BBC report.

“The Netherlands considers it necessary for national and international security reasons that this technology is brought under control as soon as possible,” Schreinemacher said, according to the report.

Without citing China or ASML, Schreinemacher said the Dutch government had taken into account “technological developments and the geopolitical context” when developing the restrictions, according to the report.

ASML said export controls require the company to apply for export licenses for advanced immersion DUV (Deep Ultraviolet) used to manufacture semiconductors.

“In this regard, it is important to remember that the additional export controls do not apply to all immersion lithography tools, but only to what are termed ‘most advanced’. While ASML has not received additional information on the exact definition of ‘most advanced’, ASML interprets this as ‘critical immersion’ which ASML defined at our Capital Markets Day as the TWINSCAN NXT:2000i and subsequent immersion systems,” ASML’s statement said. .

TWINSCAN NXT:2000i delivers superior properties for large-scale production of advanced logic modules and DRAM, according to ASML. Advanced logic modules are primarily intended for servers because they are designed to handle large amounts of data and perform complex operations.

The company said it “does not expect these measures to have a material effect on our financial outlook that we have published for 2023 or on our long-term scenarios as announced at our Investor Day last November.”

US is pressuring allies to impose restrictions on chip exports

As part of a wider trade war with China that the US waged several months ago convinced that the Netherlands and Japan will join in banning transfers of some DUV equipment. While ASML is a major manufacturer of the technology, Japan is home to manufacturers of DUV equipment such as Canon, Nikon and Tokyo Electron, making the two countries key to the US’s plan to eradicate China’s dominance in the wider world. microchip market.

Meanwhile, in an effort to reduce its dependence on other countries, China is making investments to boost its domestic semiconductor industry.

China will invest another $1.9 billion in Yangtze Memory Technologies (YMTC)the country’s largest producer of memory chips, to boost the growth of its domestic semiconductor industry, currently hampered by US sanctions.

The size of the investment demonstrates China’s efforts to boost its struggling domestic chip industry, which is currently facing restrictions on its manufacturing capabilities from the US and other countries.

Copyright © 2023 IDG Communications, Inc.

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