The founder of SMIC, China’s largest chip manufacturer, said on Tuesday that he was “optimistic” that China could catch up with the United States in the next generation of semiconductors, but that the United States’ “containment of its technological efforts” is not an “understatement.
According to official transcripts on Wednesday, Richard Chang, the former CEO of Semiconductor Manufacturing International (SMIC), said on the live forum that continued research and development and investment in new raw materials will enable China to compete.
Washington and Beijing made the above comments when they continued to have reservations about Huawei’s technology, which brought new urgency to China’s call to improve the domestic chip industry.
Zhang said in a rare forum held by China Securities: “I am optimistic and believe that we can catch up.”
He said that although China’s talent base is a “weakness” in the short term, China has made “great progress” in raw material manufacturing and is still a leader in the next generation of ultra-fast 5G technology.
He said: “If China maintains a leading position in 5G technology, then it will maintain a leading position in wireless connectivity, artificial intelligence and cloud computing, because China is already strong in high-tech applications.”
For more than a year, the United States and China have been fighting for the so-called country risk posed by the products of Chinese technology giant Huawei, and since the outbreak of the coronavirus, the relationship between the world’s two largest economies has deteriorated.
Zhang said that during his tenure at SMIC in the early 2000s, the US Department of Commerce had generally supported Chinese technology companies, but now it regards them as “the biggest obstacle.”
The US government restricts Huawei on the grounds of “national security.” The company denied any connection with the Chinese government.
Chang founded SMIC with the funding of the Chinese government in 2000 and became a domestic competitor of Taiwan’s semiconductor manufacturing company in China. He resigned in 2009.
© Thomson Reuters 2020
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