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China tells tech makers to stop using Micron chips, escalating row with US

BEIJING — Escalating a row with Washington over technology and security, the Chinese government on Sunday told users of computer equipment deemed sensitive to stop buying products from the largest U.S. memory chip maker, Micron Technology Inc.

Micron products pose unspecified “serious network security risks” that pose risks to China’s information infrastructure and affect national security, the Cyberspace Administration of China said on its website. His six-sentence statement gave no details.

“Critical information infrastructure operators in China should stop buying products from Micron Co.”, the agency said.

The United States, Europe and Japan are cutting China’s access to advanced chip manufacturing and other technologies they say could be used in weapons at a time when President Xi’s government Jinping has threatened to attack Taiwan and is becoming increasingly assertive toward Japan and other neighbors.

Chinese officials have warned of unspecified consequences, but appear to be struggling to find ways to fight back without hurting Chinese smartphone producers and other industries and efforts to develop its own processor chip suppliers.

A formal review of Micron under China’s increasingly stringent information security laws was announced on April 4, hours after Japan joined Washington in imposing restrictions on Chinese access. technology to manufacture processor chips for security reasons.

Foreign companies have been rocked by police raids on two consultancies, Bain & Co. and Capvision, and a due diligence firm, Mintz Group. Chinese authorities declined to explain the raids, but said foreign companies are required to follow the law.

Business groups and the US government have asked authorities to explain the recently expanded legal restrictions on information and how they will be enforced.

Sunday’s announcement seemed to try to reassure foreign companies.

“China firmly promotes a high-level opening up to the outside world, and as long as it abides by Chinese laws and regulations, welcomes enterprises and various platform products and services from various countries to enter the Chinese market,” said cyberspace agency.

Xi accused Washington in March of trying to block China’s development. He called on the public to “dare to fight”.

Despite this, Beijing has been slow to retaliate, perhaps to avoid disrupting Chinese industries that assemble most of the world’s smartphones, tablets and other consumer electronics. They import over $300 billion worth of foreign chips every year.

Beijing is investing billions of dollars to try to speed up chip development and reduce the need for foreign technology. Chinese foundries can provide low-end chips used in automobiles and home appliances, but cannot support smartphones, artificial intelligence and other advanced applications.

The conflict has prompted warnings that the world could decouple or split into separate spheres with incompatible technology standards that mean computers, smartphones and other products in one region won’t work in others. This would increase costs and could slow down innovation.

US-China relations are at their lowest level in decades due to security disputes, Beijing’s treatment of Hong Kong and ethnic Muslim minorities, territorial disputes and China’s multi-billion dollar trade surpluses. China.

ABC News

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