**China’s Planned Restrictions on Key Metals Will Harm Itself, Says White House National Security Adviser**
China’s decision to impose export restrictions on gallium and germanium, two key metals in the semiconductor, telecommunications, and electric-vehicle industries, will only harm itself, according to White House National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan. He believes that this move will reinforce the determination of other countries to reduce dependencies and increase the resilience of their supply chains.
The Impact of China’s Export Controls
China’s decision to subject gallium and germanium, along with their chemical compounds, to export controls is an attempt to protect its national security and gain dominance in technology. However, this move has escalated the ongoing trade war between China and the US and Europe.
In response to China’s measures, the Biden administration has been emphasizing the importance of defending national security interests while maintaining trade relations with China. The US has been restricting exports of advanced chip-making technology to China, and it is planning to block sales of some chips used in artificial-intelligence programs. China, being the dominant global producer of gallium and germanium, is likely to face significant repercussions from these restrictions.
The Broader US Stance
While the US is not seeking to completely decouple from trade with China, it is determined to establish restrictions on technology with national security implications. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen conveyed this message to top Chinese officials during her recent trip to Beijing. The US aims to create a small yard of restrictions with a high fence around it to protect its national security interests.
China’s Decision and Its Consequences
China will have to make its own decisions regarding its trade policies. However, Sullivan believes that the country’s move to restrict the export of key metals will ultimately backfire. Other countries will be motivated to reduce their dependencies on China and invest in developing their own supply chains for these critical minerals. This diversification will not only strengthen their resilience but also undermine China’s dominance in this sector.
China’s planned export restrictions on gallium and germanium are expected to have unintended consequences. By trying to protect its national security and gain technological dominance, China may actually end up strengthening its competitors. The US and other countries will likely intensify their efforts to reduce dependencies on China and increase the resilience of their own supply chains. This ongoing trade war highlights the complex relationship between economic interdependence, national security, and technological advancement.