Commerce Strengthens Restrictions on Advanced Computing Semiconductors, Semiconductor Manufacturing Equipment, and Supercomputing Items to Countries of Concern
Updates to Modify and Reinforce Restrictions Initially Released on October 7, 2022, to Address National Security Concerns Posed by PRC Military Modernization
Washington, D.C.- The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) released a package of rules designed to update export controls on advanced computing semiconductors and semiconductor manufacturing equipment, as well as items that support supercomputing applications and end-uses, to arms embargoed countries, including the PRC, and to place additional related entities in the PRC on the Entity List.
“Today’s updated rules will increase effectiveness of our controls and further shut off pathways to evade our restrictions. These controls maintain our clear focus on military applications and confront the threats to our national security posed by the PRC Government’s military-civil fusion strategy,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo. “As we implement these restrictions, we will keep working to protect our national security by restricting access to critical technologies, vigilantly enforcing our rules, while minimizing any unintended impact on trade flows.”
“Export controls are a powerful national security tool, and the updates released today build on our ongoing assessment of the U.S. national security and foreign policy concerns that the PRC’s
military-civil fusion and military modernization present,” said Under Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Security Alan F. Estevez. “BIS will continue to assess the security environment and technology landscape and will not hesitate to act as appropriate.”
“The Bureau of Industry and Security will continue to demonstrate global leadership in the regulation of advanced computing and artificial intelligence technologies. These technologies inherently serve as force multipliers for humanitarian good and also for undermining global security and advancing repression,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Administration Thea D. Rozman Kendler. “By imposing stringent license requirements, we ensure that those seeking to obtain powerful advanced chips and chip manufacturing equipment will not use these technologies to undermine U.S. national security. We will continue to hone these controls as technology evolves so that our technology is not used to threaten global peace and security.”
Today’s rules reinforce the October 7, 2022, controls to restrict the PRC’s ability to both purchase and manufacture certain high-end chips critical for military advantage. These updates are necessary to maintain the effectiveness of these controls, close loopholes, and ensure they remain durable. These controls were strategically crafted to address, among other concerns, the PRC’s efforts to obtain semiconductor manufacturing equipment essential to producing advanced integrated circuits needed for the next generation of advanced weapon systems, as well as high-end advanced computing semiconductors necessary to enable the development and production of technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) used in military applications.
Advanced AI capabilities—facilitated by supercomputing, built on advanced semiconductors— present U.S. national security concerns because they can be used to improve the speed and accuracy of military decision making, planning, and logistics. They can also be used for cognitive electronic warfare, radar, signals intelligence, and jamming. These capabilities can also create concerns when they are used to support facial recognition surveillance systems for human rights violations and abuses.