On the eve of the anniversary of the introduction by US authorities of restrictions on the supply of certain types of equipment for the production of chips to China, South Korean memory manufacturers managed to extend indefinitely the exemption for the supply of equipment to their Chinese factories, which they had been using all along. The news agency reported this Yonhap citing statements from senior South Korean officials.
Shortly after the US tightened sanctions against China last year, South Korean memory manufacturers SK hynix and Samsung Electronics managed to get permission to supply the equipment needed for their activities in China. This exemption, in its original form, was valid for one year, and when the deadline expired, Korean manufacturers began to indicate that it would be desirable to extend it. Judging by the statements South Korean media, local companies can now follow the principle of the unlimited validity of such relaxations. Otherwise, SK hynix and Samsung would have to negotiate separately with the US Department of Commerce to send each shipment of export control list devices to China.
Such commercial conditions are very important for these South Korean companies, since they are the two largest manufacturers of memory chips in the world, and their large companies are based in China, and therefore Korean suppliers inevitably have to supply Korean suppliers for their maintenance and modernization technological equipment to China, which affects the interests of the USA.
Representatives of SK hynix expressed their support and approval of the decision of the US authorities to exempt South Korean companies from the need to individually coordinate the delivery of equipment to China. “We believe this decision will help stabilize the global semiconductor supply chain.” – noted in the company’s statement. Samsung Electronics representatives in comments to the agency Bloomberg noted that this step by the US authorities eliminates significant uncertainties in the delivery to China of equipment necessary to maintain the operations of the company’s local operations.
The other restrictions Samsung faces in obtaining U.S. subsidies to build a new factory in Texas were recently changed in a way more favorable to the company. At least the US authorities no longer set a cap on the amount of investment an applicant can make in its production facilities in China, which previously corresponded to an amount of $100,000. The criterion will be the percentage increase in the area of production facilities at Chinese companies that will emerge in the next ten years. Under the new conditions, Samsung has the opportunity to modernize its Chinese company without losing the support of the American state in building a plant in Texas.