Washington DC [US], April 16 (ANI): Amid rising tensions with China on multiple fronts, US lawmakers are seeking tighter restrictions on sales of chip-making tools to Chinese companies which can be used for military hardware such as hypersonic weapons.
In a letter to US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, Senator Tom Cotton and Republican Michael McCaul have called for tighter restrictions on the sale of chip-making tools to Beijing.
"We write to urge you to designate electronic design automation (EDA) tools as a foundational technology and require a license for all end-users under the ownership, influence, or control of the People's Republic of China (PRC)," the letter said.
There is clear evidence that companies linked to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) military are using this software technology to develop advanced weaponry, the letter said.
The letter cited a recent report by The Washington Post which stated that sophisticated US EDA software was sold to an ostensibly civilian PRC company, Phytium Technology, to design advanced semiconductor chips that would be used in supercomputers at a PRC military-run hypersonic weapons research and testing facility.
Phytum was among seven Chinese entities sanctioned for engaging in military modernisation efforts.
"We find it deeply troubling that the Department of Commerce allowed such a critical US technology to be harnessed to design weapons targeting American service members operating in the Indo-Pacific," the lawmakers wrote.
Department of Commerce should immediately designate EDA software as a "Foundational Technology," which would require all US EDA companies to get an export license before exporting any product to China, the letter said. (ANI)