Wednesday, June 12, 2019
Japan’s Tokyo Electron, the world’s No.3 supplier of semiconductor manufacturing equipment, will not supply to Chinese clients blacklisted by Washington, a senior company executive told Reuters.
The decision shows how Washington’s effort to bar sales of technology to Chinese firms, including Huawei Technologies, is ensnaring non-American firms that are not obliged to follow U.S. law.
China, which is locked in a crippling trade war with the United States, is pushing to build its semiconductor industry to reduce its reliance on U.S., Japanese and European suppliers for chip-making machinery.
“We would not do businesses with Chinese clients with whom Applied Materials and Lam Research are barred from doing businesses,” the executive said, referring to the top U.S. chip equipment firms.
“It’s crucial for us that the U.S. government and industry see us as a fair company,” he said, citing Tokyo Electron’s long U.S. partnership since the 1960s, when it started off as an importer of U.S. equipment.
He did not want to be named given the sensitivity of the matter. Applied Materials and Lam Research declined to comment.
Another major Japanese chip equipment supplier is also considering halting shipments to blacklisted Chinese firms, a person familiar with the matter said.
“The issue is beyond something we can decide on our own,” said the person, who also declined to be identified.
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