US expected to announce new restrictions on AI chip exports to China
The US government is announcing new and tighter restrictions on semiconductor exports to China according to Reuters.
The upcoming restrictions, which are expected to be shared later this week, will expand technical parameters and forbid the export of more AI chips to China. This is in response to some chipmakers such as NVIDIAwho got around the existing export bans by launching new chips that fall under the current technical parameters.
A spokesperson for the US Department of Commerce says the new restrictions includeremoving the "bandwidth parameter", which is used to ban the exports of several AI data centre chips, and introducing a "performance density" parameter to cover future development of AI chips.
With the expanded scope, it is mandatory for chipmakers to inform the US government of chips that fall just below the "performance density" parameter. The US government will assess on a case-by-case basis if these chips pose a national security risk.
The export ban of chips to China started in 2020 when the US government cut off Huawei's access to overseas chipmakers.In the same year, the US tightened chipset restrictions on the Chinese company by forbidding the purchase of alternative semiconductors that are "developed or produced from U.S software or technology to the same degree as comparable US chips."
Earlier this year, the US government announced a ban on 4G, Wi-Fi, and AI chips to Huawei. Despite these export bans, Huawei claims it has replaced more than 13,000 parts with domestic alternatives in its products.
The new restrictions are likely to further strain relations between the world's two biggest economies and might force China to retaliate against more US tech companies. The Chinese government has already banned some domestic companies from buying Micron's chips. Some local governments and state-owned firms have also implemented restrictions on the use of the iPhones for work purposes.
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