Tech war: ASML, Lam Research rush to pull US engineers out of China chip operations as fresh US restrictions kick in
ASML, which has a global monopoly in the supply of EUV lithography systems, is said to be restricting US staff from serving Chinese clientsUS employees of chip-related businesses in China are rushing to comply with new regulations from the US Bureau of Industry and SecuritySemiconductorsChe Panin Beijing,Ann Caoin ShanghaiandTracy Quin ShanghaiPublished: 8:00am, 14 Oct, 2022Why you can trust SCMP
ASML Holdings and Lam Research, the world’s top chip-making tool providers, are scrambling to comply with the latest US trade restrictions on China by pulling American engineers out of their operations in the country, according to reports and a source familiar with the matter.
ASML, which has a global monopoly in the supply of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography systems, has issued an internal memo asking its US employees, including green card holders, to refrain from directly or indirectly serving customers in China until further notice, according to a source familiar with the matter. The move is aimed at addressing compliance risks following a new US requirement that restricts the involvement of US persons in advanced chip facilities in China.
“ASML is still actively assessing which particular fabs are affected by this restriction,” according to a memo the company issued to its US management team, the authenticity of which was confirmed by a person familiar with the situation who declined to be identified as they are not authorised to talk with the media.
Meanwhile, wafer fabrication equipment supplier Lam Research, along with KLA Corp, which supplies process control systems for the semiconductor industry, have pulled US engineers out of supporting equipment installed with Chinese clients, including China’s top memory chip maker Yangtze Memory Technologies Company, according to a Wall Street Journal report, which cited sources familiar with the matter.