New U.S. restrictions on tech sales to China coming

Business & Technology

Photo credit: SupChina illustration by Derek Zheng

Last week, the U.S. filed a superseding indictment against Chinese telecom giant Huawei. “The superseding indictment charges Huawei with conspiring to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) and conspiring to steal trade secrets from six U.S. technology companies in order to grow the company,” reported Reuters.  

The Trump administration is ratcheting up the tension in the tech side of the the techno-trade war: on the weekend the New York Times has reported (porous paywall) that the Trump administration is considering a raft of news measures that would limit the transfer of U.S. technology to China.

These technologies could include an aircraft engine produced in part by General Electric, further limits on Huawei, and restrictions on China’s ability to use American chip-making equipment, per CNBC.

“Top Trump administration officials will discuss whether to prevent the sale at a cabinet meeting on February 28,” according to NYT sources. Some U.S. industry players will no doubt lobby against the proposed rules. The New York Times notes:

Firms that specialize in microchips, artificial intelligence, biotechnology and other industries have grown increasingly alarmed by the administration’s efforts to restrict the flow of technology to China, saying it could siphon expertise, research and revenue away from the United States, ultimately eroding America’s advantage…