China has taken multiple actions to oppose the “Chip 4” alliance, an initiative that the U.S. is proposing for four major chip production countries, the U.S., Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. Beijing is afraid that forming the “Chip 4” alliance will isolate China. Other consequences are implied.
Huanqiu (Global Times) published a commentary on July 20, stating, “(T)he South Korean government and related companies can judge by common sense alone that participating in this matter not only will not have any incremental gains, but will also face the risk of significant damage to their interests. Data shows that last year, South Korea’s semiconductor exports totaled $128 billion, of which 60 percent went to mainland China and Hong Kong. To cut ties with this large market is tantamount to business suicide. The U.S. has handed South Korea a knife and is forcing it to do so.”
On July 25, China’s Ambassador to South Korea Xing Haiming met with Yang Hyang-ja, a South Korean National Assembly member and Chairman of the Special Committee on Strengthening the Competitiveness of the Semiconductor Industry. Xing said, “China is willing to work with South Korea to adhere to the principle of a fair and just market, eliminate external interference, and to strengthen cooperation in semiconductors and other fields .…”
Xing met with South Korean Trade Minister Ahn Duk-geun on the same day.
Huanqiu (Global Times) also published an article on July 28 to suggest that Taiwan should not join the “Chip 4.” It stated, “Currently, Taiwan’s chip exports to the mainland account for more than 40 percent of its total chip exports. Semiconductors and other electronic and communication products are large commodities. If the TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company) joins the ‘chip 4’ alliance to exclude the mainland China market, it will undoubtedly cause huge losses to the entire Taiwan economy.”
1. Huanqiu (Global Times), July 20, 2022
2. Global Times, July 25, 2022
3. Huanqiu (Global Times), July 28, 2022