The United States confirmed on Friday it will add dozens of Chinese companies, including the country’s top chipmaker, SMIC, to a trade blacklist.
The move, which was first reported by Reuters, is seen as the latest in President Donald Trump’s efforts to cement his tough-on-China legacy. It comes just weeks before Democratic President-elect Joe Biden is set to take office on Jan. 20.
The U.S. Commerce Department confirmed the decision early Friday, saying the action “stems from China’s military-civil fusion (MCF) doctrine and evidence of activities between SMIC and entities of concern in the Chinese military industrial complex.”
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in a statement that the department would “not allow advanced U.S. technology to help build the military of an increasingly belligerent adversary.”
Ross said the government would presumptively deny licenses to prevent SMIC from accessing technology to produce semiconductors at advanced technology levels – 10 nanometers or below.