According to a report from the Financial Times, the United States has requested that South Korea urge its chipmakers, Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix, not to fill any potential market gap in China if Beijing decides to ban Micron Technology from selling its memory chips in the country. This request was made before South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol’s visit to the US to meet with President Joe Biden. The visit, scheduled for April 24-29, marks the 70th anniversary of the alliance between the two countries.
The US government is concerned that Micron’s products could be used for military applications in China, and as a result, it has imposed export controls on chipmaking technology in the country. In March, China’s cyberspace regulator announced it would conduct a security review of Micron’s products sold in the country. Micron responded by stating that it cooperated with the Chinese government and that its operations in the country were normal.
While the White House did not comment on the Financial Times report, it did note that the Biden and Yoon administrations have been working together to coordinate investments in the semiconductor sector, secure critical technologies, and address economic coercion. As part of its efforts to control the flow of technology to China, the US has blacklisted several of China’s largest chip firms, including Yangtze Memory Technologies Co Ltd., a competitor to Micron.