Semiconductors, the Netherlands launches the squeeze on exports to China

Semiconductors, the Netherlands launches the squeeze on exports to China

Dutch export restrictions on electronic chip manufacturing technology will begin in September, the government announced on Friday: Companies exporting advanced semiconductor manufacturing equipment will need to obtain a license before exporting. The restrictions were introduced in March under pressure from the United States and strongly criticized by China, which called them "harassment and hegemony" by the West, also because the Netherlands is the main European producer of chips, essential electronic components for smartphones , connected cars and military equipment.

The decision was taken "in the interest of national security," said Dutch Foreign Trade Minister Liesje Schreinemacher since, according to an executive note, "semiconductors can make a fundamental contribution to some advanced military applications." In all likelihood the restrictions will concern the Dutch group Asml, one of the major European manufacturers of machinery for the production of semiconductors, and in particular the "Deep Ultraviolet" (Duv) machines, a technology used to print miniaturized circuits on microprocessors, in which the company specializes.

However, despite the measures, ASML does not foresee a material impact on the financial perspectives. The company also produces "Extreme Ultraviolet" (Euv) machines for the production of even more sophisticated electronic chips, which have already appeared in a multilateral agreement signed by about forty countries, including the USA and the Netherlands, which regulates the control of exports of dual-use civil-military technologies.

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