By Alex Willemyns
The United States has blacklisted 42 Chinese companies among a total of 49 worldwide for on-selling U.S.-made microchips to Russia in violation of sanctions, according to a document released Friday.
The blacklisting, under the Department of Commerce’s Entity List, means American companies will need to apply for a special license – which is rarely, if ever, granted – to continue selling to the firms.
The move comes amid a brewing U.S.-China trade war on microchip sales, with the Biden administration banning the export of technology to make high-end chips to China and Beijing hitting back by banning U.S. chipmaker Micron from selling in China’s market.
Besides the 42 Chinese companies, there are also three Indian and two Turkish firms blacklisted, as well as one each in Estonia, Finland, Germany, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.
All are accused of activities “contrary to the national security or foreign policy interests of the United States,” says the Federal Register filing.
“These entities are added to the Entity List for providing support to Russia’s military and/or defense industrial base. Specifically, these entities supplied Russian consignees connected to the Russian defense sector with U.S.-origin integrated circuits,” it says.
The chips “have been controlled for export and reexport and transfer within Russia since September 15, 2022,” and companies need to seek a specific license for any sales “destined to Russia or Belarus.”
The United States has called on China to not materially support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and has called the transfer of weapons a redline. But officials have also said they do not necessarily consider small shipments made by private Chinese firms to be a violation.