China slams Dutch move to limit chip tech exports

STORY: China has condemned a move by the Dutch government to restrict exports of key chip technology.

On Wednesday (March 8) the Netherlands said it would join the U.S. in imposing controls to protect national security.

That’s important, as the country is home to a key player in the global semiconductor industry.

ASML is the leading producer of the lithography machines that make chips.

The Dutch government didn’t mention the company in its proposed restrictions, but did list some lithography systems as among those to be controlled.

On Thursday (March 9) a Chinese government spokesperson condemned the move:

"China is firmly opposed to the interference in economic and trade cooperation, and the sabotage of stability of global production and supply chains. This behaviour is not in the interests of any party. We also hope that the Netherlands can seriously consider the causes for this situation and what should be done."

The U.S. imposed sweeping export restrictions on chip technology back in October.

But to be effective they need support from the Netherlands and Japan, which are home to key suppliers.

Now the Dutch move switches the focus to Tokyo, which is expected to outline its position as soon as this week.

Speaking in parliament, Japan’s economy minister said nothing was decided yet.