Treasury Secretary Yellen meets Chinese ambassador amid mounting trade tensions

Another source of tension is Taiwan's status as the global semiconductor chip manufacturing hegemon.

Published: July 4, 2023 12:13pm

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on Monday met with Beijing's envoy to the United States to discuss an ongoing commercial dispute that has recently seen Chinese restrictions on metal exports.

The Minister of Commerce announced that it would tighten export controls on gallium and germanium, two key resources in making semiconductor chips, according to the Epoch Times. The U.S. has sought to bolster its domestic semiconductor production to lessen reliance on Beijing.

Yellen's meeting with Ambassador Xie Feng came amid that announcement and ahead of her planned visit to Beijing later this week. Yellen reportedly described the conversation as "frank" and "productive."

The Times noted that the Chinese export controls appeared to be a retaliatory measure for U.S. restrictions on chipmaking materials to the country.

Another source of tension is Taiwan's status as the global semiconductor chip manufacturing hegemon. The island manufactures roughly 60% of the world's chip supply. Taiwan is governed by the Republic of China, which does not formally consider itself independent from the mainland.

Both the ROC and the People's Republic of China agree on the existence of a single unified Chinese state including the territories of both governments though each claims to legitimately govern that entity. Beijing regards Taiwan as under foreign-backed separatist control.

Concerns of a prospective Chinese invasion of Taiwan, meanwhile, have heightened in recent years and part of the U.S. semiconductor push stems from fear of the island's fall.

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on Twitter.

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