Japan to tighten chip-equipment export rules from July 23

Japan says it will tighten export controls on chipmaking equipment from July 23. Shipments to China and other destinations will face stricter screening.

The move reflects growing global concern over the potential military uses of semiconductors.

The trade ministry had already identified lithography machines as among 23 items that would fall under the new rules. Japanese companies are known for their technological advances in such equipment.

Exports subject to the tighter controls will need the trade minister's approval for each shipment.

Items sent to 42 destinations on a so-called whitelist, including the United States, South Korea and Taiwan, will not be affected.
The US has asked Japan to strengthen its controls because the country's companies have a large global market share in the sector.

The request came amid growing tensions between Washington and Beijing.

China's foreign ministry said in response that it would not tolerate Japan's tighter screening if its interests are seriously harmed.