US export ban on advanced AI chips will affect China’s access to technology


US government efforts to restrict the shipment of high-performance chips by Nvidia and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) to China have heightened tensions between the countries over technology and security. The chips are designed to run artificial intelligence applications and power data centers and the restrictions would affect Chinese companies’ ability to use advanced technologies such as image and speech recognition. Nvidia’s A100 and H100 ICs and AMD’s MI250 will be affected by the requirements.

The United States has recently stepped up efforts to cut off the flow of advanced technologies to China by banning exports of certain advanced chips and tools made by American chipmakers. The orders underscore heightened tensions between the two countries over access to advanced chip technology.

According to a Reuters report, some national security experts said the U.S. decision was a long time coming. GPUs “have been totally out of control in China and Russia, so in a lot of ways I see this action as kind of catching up to where the controls probably should have been if we were really serious about trying to slow growth of AI in China,” the report quotes Emily Kilcrease, senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, as saying.

Earlier Thursday, Nvidia confirmed that the restrictions will cover its upcoming A100 and H100 ICs. AMD’s MI250 chip will also be affected by the new requirements. Shares of chipmakers plunged after the announcement and the Philadelphia semiconductor index fell 2.18%.

Nvidia later announcement that US authorities allowed it to fulfill chip orders through its Hong Kong factory for a year.

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