The US to Resolve the Loopholes in Exporting AI Chips to China

They found out! Is it really no escaping now?

HiSilicon Kirin A2, the latest HiSilicon Chip to be manufactured

Huawei has been recently doing pretty well in China and even found ways to circumvent the prohibitions that was set to them by the United States, allowing them to manufacture chipsets, use Google services, and to some extent, use 5G services in their devices so as long it’s not Huawei-branded. Which is why you see brands such as “Hi” in the tipster community and is also why Wiko uses their designs. Wiko phones are basically Huawei phones that are not.

However, that might soon change as the United States will, more strictly, strengthen its measures against exporting AI-related chips in China. The new rules will also include the loophole that gives Chinese manufacturers access to US technology through Chinese units located overseas.

The US will introduce new guidelines to restrict certain advanced AI chips that are not currently captured, a US representative said. Although, as of this moment, no specific chips were block apart from NVIDIA’s H800.

Chips that are intended for consumer use, such as those on laptops, are exempt from these new rules. However, companies need to be transparent about them and report directly to the United States’ Department of Commerce so as to not threaten national security.

To determine which chipsets the US deems is “too powerful” to ship to China, it was suggested to limit the so-called “bandwidth parameter” which is a measure that determines how fast chips communicate with each other. It is similar to TOPS.

In addition, manufacturers are required to notify the government about the performance of their chips before shipping them to China.

The new rules will block AI chips that fall under current technical parameters while also asking companies to report shipments of others.

The recent crackdowns are, coincidentally and ironically, took place when the US is cooling down the tensions between the two global powers. Several representatives under President Biden have met their Chinese counterparts in the last few months, and the latest round of rules risk complicating diplomatic efforts.

The US cited that its restrictions are a countermeasure to prevent the Chinese military to be too powerful. Meanwhile, Beijing accused the US of abusing export controls and suppressing Chinese companies.

The restrictions already has an effect to some chip manufacturers, including NVIDIA, the most valuable chipmaker globally. The government has restricted the company to ship its most advanced AI chips to Chinese customers—chips that are already standard for chatbots and other AI-related tools.

Source: Reuters