Follow-Up: Chinese-U.S. Relations Hit New Low With Tit-for-Tat Actions

by | 4. Jul 2023 - 11:09 | Politics

After China’s export restrictions on key minerals, the U.S. prepares steps to curb Beijing’s access to cloud computing services.

On Monday, China announced to restrict exports of two critical minerals, germanium and gallium but also indium gallium arsenide, an alloy used in laser and imaging applications including military imaging at night. The U.S. is now reportedly preparing steps that could escalate the trade dispute between the two superpowers further. This includes limiting Chinese companies’ access to cloud computing services, according to information exclusively obtained by the Wall Street Journal (Paywall). If adopted, the measure would demand American firms operating in the industry to seek government approval before providing “cloud-computing services that use advanced artificial-intelligence chips” to customers in China, the sources report further. This rule would close a loophole enabling China to access advanced technology through cloud computing despite an implemented export ban.

Only days before Secretary of the Treasury Jennet Yellen’s planned visit to China from July 6 to 9, Beijing’s Monday announcement presented a further deterioration in U.S.-Chinese trade relations. Under the Trump administration, the U.S. imposed trade restrictions on American companies working with Chinese chipmaker Fujian Jinhua in October 2018, citing national security as the reason. Following multiple other export limitations, including ordering Nvidia to halt the sales of Artificial Intelligence chips to Chinese customers in September 2022, the People’s Republic considered banning exports of rare earth technologies earlier this year.

Photo: iStock/kritsapong jieantaratip

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