US-China tech war’s toll made visible at world’s largest electronics show

  • It is impossible not to see that the US-China tech war has taken a toll. The number of Chinese tech firms at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas this year was less than half of pre-pandemic levels.
  • Some absences were more conspicuous than others. DJI, the largest drone maker in the world, did not show up, as it is now one of many Chinese firms sanctioned by the US.
  • CES made visible the US-China tech decoupling that advanced over the course of 2022. From supply chains to social media, the US has been pushing to move away from reliance on China.
  • The main concern for Washington is that China will do what Japan, South Korea and Taiwan did before it: turn cheap product assembly into technological advancement that rivals the US.
  • Advanced semiconductors represent the pinnacle of technological complexity, and Washington would prefer that the ability to make them reside in nations it considers allies.
  • In Aug 22, news broke that Shanghai-based Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp was able to make 7-nm chips, and in 2022, Huawei filed a patent for extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUV), a process that can be used to make 7-nm chips.

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