Financial Times: Top European chip companies said they would comply with US sanctions but have no plan to halt their China businesses
Chinese article by 张杰
English Editor WM Zhang
11-17 17:40

By Li Panpan

Top European chipmakers are seeking stability for their businesses in China as Washington’s export controls further complicate global supply chain operations, reported Financial Times on November 15.

Chief executives of STMicroelectronics, Infineon, and NXP Semiconductors said on November 11 that while they are in compliance with Washington’s export restrictions against China’s semiconductor sector, they have no plans to halt their operations in the Asian country, the world’s second-largest economy.

The comments came during the CEO Roundtable special event at Electronica in Munich, one of Europe's biggest semiconductor trade shows, said the FT report.

“[China] is about 30% of our total revenue, and this is the market we do not want to escape, we want to continue to support,” said Jean-Marc Chery, STMicroelectronics chief executive.

NXP chief executive Kurt Sievers said although NXP’s business in China is not affected by the new rules, it has advised its US national employees to halt any communications with clients in China involved in semiconductor manufacturing since the rules took effect last month.

The US Department of Commerce in early October launched a new round of export control measures to curb China’s capability to build advanced computing technologies and artificial intelligence by restricting access to US technologies.

European companies that supply tools used in chip production, such as ASML, and European chipmakers, are less affected by the new rules than American companies, as their products for the Chinese market are more about mature chip production technologies. Nevertheless, they are worried that geopolitical uncertainties could disrupt their operations in China.

Currently, the advanced chip manufacturing equipment market is mainly controlled by KLA Corporation, Applied Materials, and Lam Research in the US, ASML in the Netherlands, and Tokyo Electron in Japan.

A Nikkei Asia Business report said that US President Biden seems to be preparing to put more pressure on Japan and the Netherlands, asking them to join forces to prevent the flow of advanced chip technology to China. "I think you're going to see Japan and the Netherlands follow us," Reuter quoted US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo as saying.

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