By Jim McGregor, EETimes (May 22, 2020)
The industry was rocked last week by two U.S. announcements that seem interconnected. The first was the Trump Administration’s announcement banning any U.S chip and equipment sales to Huawei and ZTE. The second was the announcement that TSMC would build a state-of-the-art fab in Arizona. While national security may be a common thread in the two announcements, the factors and ramifications of the individual announcements are much greater.
War on Huawei and ZTE
The U.S. government has fined, banned, and now embargoed Huawei and ZTE for multiple reasons, including violating export controls of technology shipments to embargoed and sanctioned countries and charges of intellectual property (IP) theft. To be fair, China’s policy of requiring foreign countries to form a joint venture with a Chinese company and to share IP in order to do business in the country has been an open door to IP theft. Huawei recently accused the U.S. of implementing protectionary policies — when navigating Chinese protectionism has been part of doing business in China for decades.
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