China Export Metals Ban on America (Semiconductors): Japan and PM Kishida

China Export Metals Ban on America (Semiconductors): Japan and PM Kishida

Noriko Watanabe and Kanako Mita

Modern Tokyo Times

China announced export curbs on America concerning metals involved in the semiconductor sector. Exports of gallium and germanium products to America will face controls from August 1st.

Endless sanctions by America on China, the Russian Federation, Iran, and other nations are impacting the international flow of trade. Accordingly, China is ramping up its economic curbs in retaliation.

Voice of America reports, “Some in the metals industry said they feared China could follow with new restrictions on rare earth exports, after curbing shipments 12 years ago in a dispute with Japan. China is the world’s biggest producer of rare earths, a group of metals used in EVs and military equipment.”

President Joe Biden of America is intent on containing China. This policy is being rubber-stamped in the geopolitical field by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida of Japan. However, the economic and geopolitical tensions being stoked by America in Northeast Asia don’t serve the interest of Japan.

The BBC reports, “In October (2022), Washington announced that it would require licenses for companies exporting chips to China using US tools or software, no matter where they are made in the world.”

Japan and the Netherlands – and others – have mainly fallen into the approach taken by America.

Tech Monitor reports, “Chips have become a key battleground in the trade war between the US and China, with Washington imposing increasingly stringent export controls on businesses which make and sell components in the Far East, in a bid to control China’s technological and military capabilities.”

Janet Yellen, the US Treasury Secretary, warned: “I think we gain and China gains from trade and investment that is as open as possible, and it would be disastrous for us to attempt to decouple from China.” 

Kishida announced that Japan would apply restrictions on 23 types of chip-related products (materials and equipment).

Lee Jay Walker says, “The slippery slope is detrimental to the economic welfare of Japan. However, given the nature of the Biden administration – along with the anti-China and anti-Russian Federation policies of Kishida – curbs are likely to increase in all directions.”

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