Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Ex-ASML CEO predicts that the US-China chip rivalry will persist

US-China Chip Disputes to Continue: Retired ASML CEO

In a recent interview with Dutch radio station BNR, the retired CEO of semiconductor equipment maker ASML, Peter Wennink, highlighted the ongoing ideological disputes between the US and China regarding computer chips. Wennink, who stepped down in April after a decade at the helm of ASML, stated that these disputes are not based on facts but rather on ideology, indicating that they are likely to persist.

Amid increasing restrictions imposed by the US on ASML’s exports to China since 2018, Wennink emphasized the challenges faced by the company in managing the interests of stakeholders while navigating geopolitical tensions. He underscored the importance of balancing export restrictions with obligations to customers and staff in China, where ASML has been present for three decades.

Wennink revealed that he had advocated against overly stringent export regulations while also addressing concerns about intellectual property with Chinese leaders. He emphasized that his actions were driven by a commitment to stakeholders rather than allegiance to any particular country.

Looking ahead, Wennink predicted that the chip war between the US and China could span decades, reflecting the enduring nature of geopolitical interests in the semiconductor industry. Despite the complexities involved, he reiterated the importance of managing relationships with customers, suppliers, employees, and shareholders.

Given Wennink’s insights on the nuanced dynamics of the global semiconductor landscape, it is evident that the US-China disputes over computer chips are not just about technology but are deeply intertwined with broader geopolitical considerations. As these tensions continue to evolve, stakeholders in the semiconductor industry will need to navigate complex challenges in the pursuit of innovation and market competitiveness.

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