China urges Japan to stop enforcing chip export limitations

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  • Chinese Commerce Minister Wang Wentao has urged Japan to stop imposing chip export controls, which he believes “seriously violated” international economic and trade rules. This statement was made during Wang’s talks with Japanese Trade Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura at the APEC conference.
  • Japan has been imposing tighter restrictions on exports of semiconductor materials to China, citing national security concerns. China has been calling on Japan to lift the restrictions on its technology exports for some time to promote practical cooperation in key economic and trade areas.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted global supply chains, highlighting the importance of self-sufficiency in key industries like semiconductor manufacturing. Countries are ramping up their efforts to build up their domestic chip-making capabilities. China, for instance, aims to become self-sufficient in chip-making by 2025 but is heavily reliant on imported chip-making materials, notably from Japan, which is a major supplier of the raw materials used in chip-making.

BEIJING – China on Friday called on Japan to stop implementing restrictions on the export of high-tech materials to South Korea, saying the move would seriously undermine global technological progress.

The restrictions cover the export of fluorinated polyimide, hydrogen fluoride and resist, which are crucial for making semiconductors and flat-panel displays.

“Japan should not use technological cooperation as a tool to narrow the gap with China, or to suppress technological innovation in other countries, because this will cause greater harm to all stakeholders,” said Geng Shuang, the spokesperson of China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Geng said the move would not only hurt the interests of South Korea, but also the industrial chains and supply chains of many countries.

“The high-tech industry is a highly interconnected field, and any country that damages the interests of others will also suffer losses,” he said.

Geng urged Japan to respect the principles of free trade and the rules of the World Trade Organization, and work with other countries to promote international cooperation and joint technological progress.

South Korea said on Tuesday that Japan’s move is retaliation for court rulings in South Korea that ordered Japanese companies to compensate South Korean victims of forced labor during Japan’s colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula from 1910 to 1945.

The spat comes amid a trade war between the United States and China, which has raised concerns about global economic growth and upended supply chains.

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