The United States’ chip export limitation measures have prompted one of China’s largest trade associations to petition the Chinese commerce ministry to file an official trade dispute with the World Trade Organization.
Since October of this year, the US has approved a series of broad laws and policies designed to cut China off from the global semiconductor sector. If these restrictions work as intended, China’s plans to become the dominant manufacturer of semiconductors would be severely hampered.
Since October of this year, the United States has enacted a series of broad laws and steps intended to cut China off from the global semiconductor business. Among these rules is a request to the Netherlands to prevent certain businesses from providing Chinese manufacturers with licences and machinery needed to produce silicon chips.
A statement issued by the Chinese diplomatic mission in Geneva on behalf of the Chinese commerce ministry said, “China takes legal steps within the WTO framework as a necessary means to address our concerns and to safeguard our legitimate interests.” It further stated that the US restrictions “threatened the stability of global industrial supply networks.”
“We have received a request for discussions from the (People’s Republic of China) pertaining to specific U.S. policies affecting semiconductors,” Adam Hodge, a spokeswoman for the US Trade Representative’s office, said.
A formal “request for consultations” is the first stage in a lengthy process at the World Trade Organization. Unfortunately, some trade disputes never get resolved because the United States has blocked nominations to the WTO’s top judging body on trade disputes.
According to Hodge’s emailed statement, the WTO is “not the right place to debate problems relating to national security,” which the United States has already stated to the People’s Republic of China.
Just days after the WTO ruled against the United States in a different case involving metal tariffs, China filed a protest with the organisation demanding that export restrictions on US-made semiconductors be lifted. As expected, the United States, a frequent opponent of WTO arbitration processes, did not accept the WTO’s conclusions.
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