US Barely Maintains Tech Export Ban to China

In practice, despite trade wars and strict regulations, the US approves 94% of sensitive technology license applications.


At least that’s what the Wall Street Journal reports. He examined how many technological goods banned from export by the Commerce Department are also held back before being shipped to a country like China. The US government previously announced that it would block certain technologies that may be important for the country’s security.

This concerns, for example, components and machinery for making semiconductors, artificial intelligence, and space technology. Goods on the list should, in principle, not fall into the hands of foreign powers that the US does not trust (such as China), and companies that want to export them to those countries need a special license.

In practice, the United States Commerce Department issued 2,652 export licenses in 2020 for goods listed as sensitive technology. That is approval for 94% of the applications. However, licenses are required for less than half a percent of the $125 billion worth of exports to China, according to the Wall Street Journal. The vast majority of them are, therefore, simply approved.

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