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

Key Takeaways

  • U.S.-person personnel at Chinese chip manufacturers are in a precarious position.
  • New rules limit what activities those persons may undertake with respect to their work.
  • However, there are ways they can nevertheless contribute to their companies, maintain their citizenship status, and comply with applicable U.S. law.


Continue Reading China Semiconductor Regulations, Episode II – The Curious Case of the American in a Chinese Chip Company

The Announcement

On Friday, October 7, 2022, the U.S. Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) released for public inspection (available here) one hundred forty pages of regulations (which we’ll call “the Regulation” here). Nearly all of the changes in the Regulation restrict the export of semiconductors, as well as related technology, manufacturing equipment, software, and even U.S.-person support, to China.

Continue Reading China Semiconductor Export Regulations, Episode I – Counting Your Chips Carefully

** Update: Announcement has been moved to Friday October 7, 2022 at 9:30 AM Eastern Daylight Time **

On Thursday, the Biden administration will announce new restrictions preventing China from accessing advanced U.S. semiconductor technology.

Continue Reading Further Export Controls on Semiconductor Technology for China coming this Week

On April 29, 2022, the UK introduced new measures to prevent the provision of internet services to or for the benefit of designated persons.[1] These measures apply to the whole territory of the UK and to conduct by UK persons where that conduct is wholly or partly outside the UK. The designated entities or individuals (“Designated Persons”) can be found on the regularly updated UK Sanctions List with the tag “Internet Sanctions List”. To date, only V-Novosti and Rossiya Segodnya are designated under those authorities.

Continue Reading Introduction of internet-related Russia trade sanctions in the UK

Updated as of March 3, 2022

Key Takeaways of EU and UK Recent Actions Against Russia and Ukraine Breakaway Regions

  • The EU adopted sanctions restrictions targeting financial institutions, other entities, and individuals, and imposing territorial restrictions on Donetsk and Luhansk. The sanctions also include broad export restrictions to Russia detailed below.
  • In the UK, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has promised and adopted a “massive package of economic sanctions” including asset freeze restrictions; potential exclusion of Russian banks from the UK financial system, including preventing access by such banks to GBP and clearing services in the UK; and dual-use export restrictions to Russia.


Continue Reading Russian Risk: Transactions with Russian Banks and Exports to Russia Create Greatest Exposure Under New EU and UK Ukraine-Related Sanctions

On Tuesday, May 19, the U.S. Commerce Department published a regulation (effective May 15, 2020) that prohibits sale to Huawei of a microchip made to a Huawei specification, made outside the United States with non-U.S. materials, sent from a foreign country, by a foreign person.

To quote the philosopher, hol’ up.

How is that even possible?
Continue Reading Huawei Whack-A-Mole: The U.S. Takes Another Swing at the Chinese Semiconductor Industry

Is your company in a high-risk zone? Does it have the following risk characteristics?

Your company imports more than $10 million of goods.
You are mid-market: between $50 million and $2 billion in annual turnover.
Your company has experienced higher than average growth in revenues, personnel, or imports over the past 2 – 10 years.

If your company fits this profile, you may be at an elevated risk of customs violations. Many companies in this high-risk zone have outgrown their customs compliance function. Without knowing it, they may be creating violations and, since the statute of limitations is five years, they may not know about the violations until the government comes knocking on their door years after the fact.
Continue Reading Sick without Symptoms: How Multi-Million Dollar Customs Issues are Ailing U.S. Companies Without Warning

“A free and open economy is the foundation of global peace and prosperity.”
– Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, G20 summit, June 2019.

On July 1, 2019, only few days after Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe opened the G20 summit with a speech endorsing an open global economy, the Japanese government announced that it will impose tighter controls on technology-related exports from Japan to South Korea for reasons of national security. The controls may have a devastating effect on trade between the two countries and will create further drag on the world economy.
Continue Reading A Chinese Export License to Get a Smart Phone? Tech-Tonic Changes in World Export Controls

Boy, does it sound convincing when Mr. Trump states he will submit notice under section 2205 of NAFTA to let Mexico and Canada know that the U.S. will withdraw from NAFTA. The problem is, while the president-to-be is capable, we presume, of writing, signing, and sending (or possibly tweeting) such a notification, that notification would not have a legal significance because withdrawing from NAFTA, ab initio, is not a power accorded the President.
Continue Reading The Undoing Project – Why NAFTA Can’t be Undone, but Can be Re-Done