The Dutch government is planning to strengthen restrictions on exports of advanced semiconductor manufacturing technology. The measures would effectively align the Netherlands with the United States in further curbing China's access to chip technology.
The Dutch government said in a letter to parliament on Wednesday that the limits will take effect before the summer to prevent the technology from being used for military purposes. But the letter does not specify whether the restrictions will target China.
A Dutch company is the world's leading producer of equipment to manufacture advanced chips.
The US said last October that it would tighten restrictions on exports of semiconductor-related products to China that could be used for military applications.
The US has been calling on the Netherlands and Japan to take similar steps.
Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Mao Ning told a news conference on Thursday that China disapproves of the Netherlands' interference through administrative means in the normal trade between Dutch and Chinese businesses. She said China has conveyed its stance to the Netherlands.
Mao added that in recent years, certain countries have politicized and used trade and tech issues to maintain hegemony and deprive China of its right to develop.