China wants clarification through the World Trade Organization on chip agreements between the US and the Netherlands

Photo: ANP

China has asked the Netherlands, Japan and the United States for clarification on the agreement they reached on export restrictions on chip technology. The Chinese government wants the three countries to report these agreements to the World Trade Organization (WTO) so that the international free trade arbiter can scrutinize them.

Last month, the government confirmed that it had imposed additional restrictions on chip machine maker ASML when exporting high-quality equipment to China. Japan recently announced that a number of chip companies in the country must first apply for a license to sell advanced products abroad, which also amounts to restricting exports to China.

Those announcements came after a meeting of representatives of the Dutch, Japanese and US governments in Washington in January, where the countries agreed not to sell certain technology to China, according to Bloomberg News sources.

According to China’s Radio and Television Corporation, these agreements “affect the principles of fairness and transparency in the WTO,” according to China. The country accused the United States of seeking “technological superiority” and called on the Netherlands not to keep up.

President Joe Biden’s government has already taken action in the fall of 2022 to prevent China from developing the latest semiconductors. This will be necessary for national and international security, because these high-quality chips can also be used for military purposes. China says these security concerns are unfounded.

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