US restricts exports to Chinese semiconductor firm

US restricts exports to Chinese semiconductor firm
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The U.S. Commerce Department announced Monday that it is restricting U.S. exports to the Chinese semiconductor firm Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit Company, Ltd.

The firm "poses a significant risk of becoming involved in activities that are contrary to the national security interests of the United States," according to the department's press release.

Jinhua has been added to the department's Entity List.

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"When a foreign company engages in activity contrary to our national security interests, we will take strong action to protect our national security," Secretary of Commerce Wilbur RossWilbur Louis RossThe Hill's 12:30 Report: O'Rourke jumps into 2020 fray 'Marie Antoinette' activist attends House hearing to protest Trump Commerce chief The Hill's Morning Report - Trump, Senate GOP clash over Yemen, border security MORE said in Monday's statement. "Placing Jinhua on the Entity List will limit its ability to threaten the supply chain for essential components in our military systems.”

Through its use of what is likely American technology, Jinhua "is nearing completion of substantial production capacity for dynamic random access memory (DRAM) integrated circuits,"  the release charges.

"The additional production, in light of the likely U.S.-origin technology, threatens the long term economic viability of U.S. suppliers of these essential components of U.S. military systems."

Now that Jinhua has been added to the Entity List, any exports or transfers to Jinhua will have to be licensed.

Tensions have been relatively high between China and the U.S. in recent weeks and the U.S. has added multiple other Chinese companies to the Entity List this year.

The U.S. sent two warships through the Straight of Taiwan last week after a Chinese destroyer  reportedly aggressively maneuvered towards a U.S. ship in disputed waters earlier this month.

Earlier this month, Beijing canceled a meeting with Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman Mattis16 times Trump said ISIS was defeated, or soon would be Overnight Defense: Pentagon chief under investigation over Boeing ties | Trump uses visual aids to tout progress against ISIS | Pentagon, Amnesty International spar over civilian drone deaths Pentagon watchdog probing whether acting chief boosted Boeing MORE and President TrumpDonald John TrumpPapadopoulos claims he was pressured to sign plea deal Tlaib asking colleagues to support impeachment investigation resolution Trump rips 'Mainstream Media': 'They truly are the Enemy of the People' MORE accused China of meddling in the 2018 midterm elections, which China has denied.

Economically, the two countries have been locked in a tense trade war, with each country slapping the other with escalating tariffs.