Chip exports to Russia plunged by 90% after curbs-U.S. official

Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, U.S., February 1, 2022. Andrew Harnik/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

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WASHINGTON, June 29 (Reuters) – Global semiconductor exports to Russia have fallen 90% since the United States and its allies imposed export controls on Moscow following its invasion of Ukraine, a said US Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo on Wednesday.

Raimondo, speaking at an annual Commerce Department conference, also said controls placed on Russia’s aerospace sector are hammering its ability to generate revenue and support military aviation.

“Russia could be forced to ground between half and two-thirds of its commercial aircraft over the next four years in order to cannibalize them for spare parts,” she added.

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The remarks came a day after US President Joe Biden’s administration on Tuesday added five companies in China to a trade blacklist for allegedly supporting Russia’s military and defense industrial base, showing force to enforce sanctions against Moscow.

The United States worked with allies to punish Russian President Vladimir Putin for the invasion, which Moscow calls a “special operation”, by sanctioning a set of Russian companies and oligarchs and adding others to a commercial blacklist.

While U.S. officials have previously said China is generally adhering to restrictions, Washington has pledged to closely monitor compliance and rigorously enforce regulations.

On Wednesday, Raimondo also doubled down on his threats to “shut down” China’s top chipmaker SMIC if it was found to be supplying chips to Russia.

“What if SMIC or other China-based semiconductor companies happen to be supplying chips to Russia?” she says. “We will shut them down and we can because almost all chips in the world and in China are made using American equipment and software and I intend to keep that commitment if necessary.”

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Reporting by Alexandra Alper and Karen Freifeld; Editing by Mark Porter and Deepa Babington

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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