Taiwan Bans Exports Of Modern Microchips To Russia And Belarus
TAIPEI - Taiwan has banned all exports of 'modern' microchips to both Russia and Belarus, according to Taiwan News. The ban limits sales of all CPUs to chips with a frequency of less than 25 MHz to the two countries in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
Taiwan currently dominates the microchip and semiconductor industry, accounting for 92% of the world's output for advanced microchips, according to estimates by the industry.
Dan Blumenthal, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute said that "It’s almost impossible to duplicate Taiwan’s manufacturing capability of high-end chips, of low-end chips. It’s just the manufacturing hub of the world".
Banning Russia from importing Taiwanese microchips will severely limit its ability to replace military hardware lost while fighting Ukrainian forces due to the fact that Russian military equipment has been found to use foreign technology extensively.
According to The Drive, captured Russian military equipment taken apart by the Ukrainian military were found to rely heavily on foreign microchips. Most of the microchips found in Russian military equipment were made in the United States, which have also banned technology sales to Russia.
The Western ban of technology to Russia has reportedly forced Russia to use microchips in its military gear that were harvested from household appliances, according to a report by the Washington Post in early May.
According to the report Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo stated that Russia has been forced to use processors harvested from dishwashers and refrigerators in its military equipment.
"We have reports from Ukrainians that when they find Russian military equipment on the ground, it’s filled with semiconductors that they took out of dishwashers and refrigerators" Raimondo said in a Senate hearing.
"Our approach was to deny Russia technology — technology that would cripple their ability to continue a military operation. And that is exactly what we are doing" she had said, responding to a question about the impact of the 'export controls'.
The Taiwan Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) announced a list of high-tech commodities that have been banned from exportation to both Russia and also Belarus due to the fact that Belarus may help Russia import banned items from the list.
The list given by the MOEA includes "Microprocessors or microcircuits with any of the following conditions are under the ban: (1) Performance speeds reach 5 gigaFlops or higher and an arithmetic logic unit has access width of 32 bits or more; (2) clock frequency rates exceed 25MHz; (3) more than one data or instruction bus or one serial communication port that provide direct external interconnection between parallel microcircuits at a transfer rate of 2.5MB/s" according to DigiTimes.
"ICs with more than 144 pins or basic gate propagation delay time of less than 0.4 nanosecond are also prohibited" it added. The limitations essentially ban all modern technology from being imported from Taiwan to Russia or Belarus.