Home ASML stock price dips as Netherlands revokes China export license

ASML stock price dips as Netherlands revokes China export license

The Dutch government has partially revoked an export license for semiconductor equipment giant ASML (Advanced Semiconductor Materials Lithography) to ship some of its most advanced lithography machines to China, report Reuters.

The canceled export license affects ASML’s NXT:2050i and NXT:2100i systems. It comes after the European tech giant received “further clarification of the scope and impact” of expanded US export rules aimed at limiting China’s domestic chipmaking capabilities.

ASML stock price dips

ASML’s stock dipped 1.54% to 671.20 euros on the news, kicking off 2024 on a sour note on the first trading day of the new year.

While the license cancelation won’t have a “material impact” on ASML’s 2023 earnings, the company did not disclose the specific financial implications. It also remains unclear exactly how many lithography machines will be affected.

ASML’s most advanced extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography systems have required a Dutch export license since September 2023 due to US government pressure. These advanced machines are crucial for producing leading-edge chips below 10 nanometers.

China claims discrimination

China was quick to criticize the Netherlands’ decision, with Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin stating Beijing hopes the Dutch government will “protect the common interests of both countries and their companies and maintain the stability of international supply chains”.

The official X account for The Chinese Communist Party’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs urged the Netherlands to “uphold fairness & market principles.”

Asia’s biggest economy was ASML’s third-largest market after Taiwan and South Korea in 2022. However, during Q3 2023, China accounted for a whopping 46% of ASML’s total revenue – making it the company’s largest market. Broader tensions have been rising due to US-spearheaded efforts to constrain China’s semiconductor industry through export controls and Beijing has been investing billions to foster its domestic chip capabilities but still lags years behind cutting-edge manufacturing.

Countries have been reluctant to export their most advanced semiconductor technology to China due to rising national security concerns, fears of enabling its military capabilities, and a brewing technology cold war with the US.  With chips becoming critical infrastructure for military systems and emerging technologies like AI, Western nations are increasingly wary of strengthening Beijing’s capabilities and economic competitiveness in strategic fields.

Picture: Pixabay

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Sam Shedden
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Sam Shedden is an experienced journalist and editor with over a decade of experience in online news. A seasoned technology writer and content strategist, he has contributed to many UK regional and national publications including The Scotsman, inews.co.uk, nationalworld.com, Edinburgh Evening News, The Daily Record and more. Sam has written and edited content for audiences whose interests include media, technology, AI, start-ups and innovation. He's also produced and set-up email newsletters in numerous specialist topics in previous roles and his work on newsletters saw him nominated as Newsletter Hero Of The Year at the UK's Publisher Newsletter Awards 2023. He…

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