can China’s chipmaking drive save it from US technology embargo?



diagram: China is investing huge resources into achieving a breakthrough in chipmaking. Illustration: Lau Ka-kuen


China is investing huge resources into achieving a breakthrough in chipmaking. Illustration: Lau Ka-kuen

Over the past year, President Xi Jinping has on multiple occasions described China’s reliance on imported technology with the term Qia Bozi, which translates to being strangled by an adversary. And no industry better reflects this weakness than semiconductor manufacturing – the microprocessors that power the modern economy, from smartphones to cars.

China often boasts of having the world’s most extensive industrial value chain and is known as the global leader in assembling mobile handsets, but the country relies on foreign chips, most notably from the United States.

China has spent more than about US$300 billion annually on imported chips over the past two years.

Get the latest insights and analysis from our Global Impact newsletter on the big stories originating in China.

But a rapidly deteriorating relationship with the US is making it increasingly hard

Read More