In 1947, then President Harry Truman pledged that the United States would support any nation in its efforts to resist Communism and prevent its spread. The policy was commonly called, “Containment,” capturing the concept that countries aligned with U.S. policy would surround the Soviet Union and its allies, containing the spread of their ideologies. The policy was maintained as doctrine and a guiding principle in U.S. policy throughout the Cold War era.Continue Reading China Semiconductor Export Regulations, Episode IV – “Technological Containment” – U.S. Semiconductor Restrictions Aim to Align Allies with U.S. Policy
- Advanced Computing and Supercomputing ECCNs are expanded.
- Controls applied to exports to countries other thanChina; countries from where items may be reexported to China.
- Chipmaking equipment controls are expanded and the de minimis rule reduced.
- New entities are added to the U.S. Entity List with the Footnote 4 (FN4) FDPR designation.
- More U.S.-person activity is controlled.
On August 9, 2023, President Biden issued an Executive Order (E.O.) ordering the issuance of outbound investment restrictions. This E.O. comes after nearly a year of anticipation (as we have documented on several occasions over the past year). This is the start of the reverse Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) process that has been mostly speculation (and blog articles) until yesterday. In conjunction, the Treasury Department issued a press release, fact sheet, and Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) seeking comments from the public on the proposed restrictions by September 28.Continue Reading Reverse CFIUS Unveiled: Focus on China, Semiconductors, Artificial Intelligence, and Quantum Computing
Between Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and growing U.S. tensions with China, U.S. export controls are in the spotlight like never before. As if regulators have not already made it clear enough, recent statements and actions indicate that the enforcement crosshairs are squarely on the semiconductor industry.Continue Reading Watching the Detectives: Export Control Enforcement Trends Upward
- Outbound investment rules may require notification, but there is less risk of transactions being blocked by regulators.
- Investments in advanced semiconductors in China may still be subject to being blocked.
- The required notification, review, and possible restriction still represents a massive increase (from almost nothing) in regulation on outbound investments.
- Increases in the scope and powers of the reviewers may follow in future regulations or legislation.
It looks like the licensing restrictions on Huawei are trickling into effect.
Our sources indicate that, as early as February 27, all license applications for exports or transfers involving Huawei which were pending with the U.S. Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) have been placed on Hold Without Action. Further, we understand from various industry sources that BIS has begun informing certain U.S. companies that they will not receive further licenses to export chips for end use by Huawei.Continue Reading Breaking the Link – New Developments on U.S. Licenses for Exports to Huawei
Update and Correction: We had understood that the date for the announcement of a regulatory change would be February 13. That understanding is (pretty obviously, now, on February 14) incorrect. We still believe the change is imminent and will update as soon as we have further information.
- Soon, the U.S. government will officially issue a stricter policy of denial for providing lower-tech items to Huawei.
- Technological containment continues as the Netherlands and Japan move to impose U.S.-style restrictions on semiconductor exports to China.
- New outbound investment controls likely to focus on semiconductors, AI, and quantum computing.
- Biotechnology and battery technology investments overseas may not be subject to the upcoming proposed controls.
On January 5, 2023, President Biden signed into law S. 1294, the “Protecting American Intellectual Property Act of 2022”. The Act requires the president to report to Congress and impose sanctions on any foreign person or entity the president identifies that has committed or “provided significant financial, material, or technological support” for the significant theft of trade secrets that are “reasonably likely to result in or has materially contributed to a significant threat to the national security, foreign policy, or economic health or financial stability of the United States.”Continue Reading Potential Sanctions for Alleged Intellectual Property Theft on the Horizon?
As you may have heard here (and here and here), in October 2022, the United States issued sweeping measures aimed at the semiconductor industry in China. The new regulations restrict the export of semiconductors and related technology, manufacturing equipment, software, and even U.S.-person support, to China. The regulations are part of a high-stakes chess match between the United States and China, as they compete for technological and economic dominance. One important result of this struggle is that the global semiconductor industry is being squeezed by the regulatory and geopolitical pressure exerted by both sides.Continue Reading The New Containment: How the Semiconductor Industry Came to Be at the Heart of the Technological Cold War
As we close out a wild year for international trade regulation, after hearing much talk about outbound investment review mechanisms, we may see a final dramatic change before the ball drops. Since the summer, we have talked here about potential outbound investment reviews (reverse CFIUS? SUIFC?). And while there have been reports of potential action by both Congress and the Biden Administration on outbound investment, it is all the more possible to see executive action before a new Congress takes seat.Continue Reading Will We Ring in the New Year with Outbound Investment Restrictions?