A Chinese-owned company bought a fuzzy chip factory in the UK last year. After the United States made it clear that it was opposed to the purchase, the United Kingdom launched an investigation into the possible cancellation of the agreement.
Last week, UK Commerce Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng launched a national security review of the deal, in which the Chinese subsidiary of Chinese chipmaker acquired a semiconductor plant in Wales in July last year.
Nexperia, a subsidiary of China’s WingTech, said it had acquired Newport Wafer Fab to boost global production capacity.
Behind the scenes, the diplomat at the US embassy in London told British officials in recent weeks that the factory – if it returned to British hands – could help the UK as a hub for the production of critical chips for electric vehicles. Familiar with conversations.
The diplomat did not ask the British to withdraw the agreement, these people said, but made it clear that the United States wanted it. The UK review is one of the first major inquiries to emerge from the new powers the UK has recently adopted, allowing investigations into foreign acquisitions for national security reasons, even backwards.
The previously undeclared US relationship is part of a less important diplomacy between the US and China over the technological Cold War.
A source close to the US administration said his goal was to negotiate a US alliance with the Allies in the technology competition, but he did not ask other countries to take specific action.
A spokesman for Nexperia said that since the acquisition of the British factory, the company had paid off local government debt, pledged to invest about $ 100 million in the factory premises and hired 50 new employees, raising the number of workers to 500. Due to the manufacture of chips for hair dryers and other general equipment, the factory does not pose a national security risk.
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