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U.S. Unjust, Myopic Tech Bullying Undermines Global Chip Industry, Bound to Fail

To maintain its economic and technological hegemony, the United States has once again abused export control measures, standing in stark contrast with its declared support for market economy and fair competition.

Despite China’s repeated statements of its position on the United States’ restrictions on chip exports to China, the U.S. administration earlier this week tightened its AI chip exports and added more Chinese entities to its export control “entity list.”

It is the latest example of the United States overstretching the concept of national security and abusing export control measures, and it is in keeping with its trend of politicizing and weaponizing trade and tech issues in recent years.

For the highly globalized semiconductor industry, the wrongful expansion of U.S. chip export controls severely violates market rules and the order of the international economy and trade, and threatens the stability of global industrial and supply chains. It is bringing severe losses to U.S. semiconductor firms and also affecting their peers in other countries.

So it isn’t difficult to explain why the move has sparked opposition, with the Chinese Ministry of Commerce expressing its strong dissatisfaction and opposition, and the U.S. semiconductor industry voicing criticism.

The Semiconductor Industry Association, which represents 99 percent of the U.S. semiconductor industry by revenue and nearly two-thirds of non-U.S. chip firms, stated that “overly broad, unilateral controls risk harming the U.S. semiconductor ecosystem without advancing national security.”

And prominent industry players have been more affected by the new curbs. AI chip market leader Nvidia has reportedly been hit the hardest, with its shares tumbling nearly 5 percent Tuesday when the U.S. Commerce Department updated its export controls. Shares of major AI chipmakers AMD and Intel also closed lower that day.

The backlash has clearly proved that rampant U.S. techno-nationalism, which specifically aims to contain China’s sci-tech advancement, goes against the trend of global sci-tech cooperation, undermines global trade rules, and inevitably brings more uncertainty to the global supply chain.

Unlike Japan when its chip industry was suppressed by the U.S. in the 1980s, China has a huge domestic market to form a complete chip industry chain. The vigorous chip industry development in the world’s largest semiconductor market is unstoppable, and any attempt to suppress China’s chip industry is bound to end in failure.

A nation’s sci-tech strategies and policies should foster a healthy ecosystem for innovation and enhance competitiveness, rather than maliciously suppressing its competitors in a show of lacking self-confidence. The U.S. blockades are both shortsighted and ineffective, and have damaged the country’s international reputation further. With its broken moral compass, it is no wonder that the U.S. has lost its way.

The United States should get back on track as soon as possible, remove export controls on semiconductors to China and create an equitable, just and predictable business environment for all enterprises, irrespective of their national origins.

Standing at the crossroads of mutually beneficial cooperation and zero-sum games, the path ahead is clear. Baring fangs will do nothing to aid our journey forward.

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