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SITUATION REPORTOct 9, 2020 | 21:08 GMT
U.S.: Possible Xilinx Acquisition by AMD Points to More Consolidation in Semiconductor Industry
In another potential move that could continue to reshape the semiconductor industry -- and draw regulatory scrutiny in China -- Santa Clara-based Advanced Micro Devices is in talks to buy San Jose-based Xilinx in a deal that could reach $30 billion, The Wall Street Journal reported Oct. 9. Its sources said a deal could be finalized as early as next week.
AssessmentsJul 16, 2020 | 10:00 GMT
The Huawei logo is pictured on a router during a 5G event in London on Feb. 20, 2020.
U.S. Actions Against Huawei Will Only Embolden China’s Push to Grow Its Tech Sector
Escalating U.S. actions against Huawei will only motivate China to pump its domestic technology sector with even more funding and talent, which will in turn prompt the United States to impose more restrictions on international companies doing business with Huawei and other Chinese firms that pose a threat to its global tech dominance. This will result in a cat-and-mouse game in which Washington deploys whatever financial and diplomatic tools are at its disposal to close any loopholes that China and Chinese tech companies can exploit to better compete with the West. 
SnapshotsJun 24, 2020 | 10:00 GMT
Seeking a Political Win, Trump Takes Aim at Immigration Visas
After weeks of speculation, U.S. President Donald Trump finally issued a presidential proclamation on June 22 outlining visa changes that will significantly impede the ability of U.S. tech companies and universities to attract international talent and investment. Should they become permanent, the changes could place the United States' competitive advantage as a business hub in jeopardy by making U.S. visa programs more difficult for foreigners to access. 
AssessmentsFeb 7, 2020 | 10:00 GMT
An employee sits in the showroom of an Apple store in Beijing after it closed for the day on Feb. 1, 2020.
The Coronavirus Spreads Fears of a Shutdown in China's Tech Sector
Without question, the new coronavirus has taken a toll on China and many other places in the world, infecting at least 30,600 people and killing 633 as of Feb. 7. But only now, as the Lunar New Year holiday draws to a close, is Beijing preparing to assess just how much economic damage the coronavirus outbreak has wrought, especially as China is central to the global electronics and information technology sector. Ultimately, the breadth of the impact depends on how far the virus spreads beyond its current location. Hubei province and its capital, Wuhan, are not critical nodes for the vast majority of China's electronics sector. But neighboring provinces, including Shaanxi, Henan and Jiangxi, are home to cities that are prominent in the global technology sector, while the provinces with the second and third most confirmed cases so far, Zhejiang and Guangdong, are arguably China's two most critical areas for tech.
AssessmentsNov 25, 2019 | 09:15 GMT
South Koreans participate in a rally to denounce Japan's new trade restrictions and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Aug. 24, 2019, in Seoul. The bilateral relationship between Japan and South Korea has worsened recently amid escalating trade tensions.
Japan and South Korea Brace for a Prolonged Trade Battle
Between the slings and arrows of China's global trade war with the United States, a separate battle has been brewing between the Asia-Pacific's next two largest economies: Japan and South Korea. But unlike the economic issues underpinning Beijing's fight with Washington, Tokyo and Seoul's dispute is fundamentally rooted in bitter grievances that date back to Japan's occupation of South Korea during World War II. The politically delicate nature of the dispute will continue to complicate both countries' ability -- and desire -- to bring a definitive end to their spat. But between the two, South Korea's more export-reliant economy stands more to lose from souring trade relations with Japan.
SnapshotsNov 22, 2019 | 21:34 GMT
South Korea and Japan Cool Their Trade Spat in the Name of Security
Just in the nick of time, South Korea has saved a bilateral intelligence-sharing pact with Japan. On Nov. 22, Seoul decided to provisionally extend the pact -- mere hours before it expired -- that it had planned to exit in retaliation for export restrictions that Tokyo imposed in response to Seoul's demands for greater compensation for the Korean wartime victims of imperial Japan. In addition, Seoul announced that it would pause its related challenge against Japan at the World Trade Organization. But even if the two have managed to halt the escalation in their miniature trade war, Seoul and Tokyo still have much work to do to truly bury the hatchet.
On GeopoliticsNov 1, 2019 | 09:30 GMT
The national flags of China and the United States.
By Mixing Tech and Human Rights Sanctions on China, the White House Crosses the Rubicon
Conspicuously absent from an emerging China-U.S. trade truce is the outstanding issue of U.S. export restrictions against Huawei. The omission reveals an uncomfortable and growing reality for U.S. tech firms: Politically convenient trade truces will come and go, but the strategic competition between the United States and China is deepening. Technology is a fundamental component of this broader rivalry, which also makes it a radioactive element in the trade talks and a prime target for China hawks advocating a decoupling of the U.S. and Chinese economies. At this stage of the competition, national security, human rights and sovereignty are getting mashed together along with American public attitudes on how to contend with China when it comes to shaping U.S. policy. As a result, the political room to negotiate on an issue like Huawei is narrowing by the day, driving a more hard-line U.S. policy toward China overall.
On SecurityOct 15, 2019 | 09:30 GMT
Mourners place flowers at a makeshift memorial on Oct. 10, 2019, at the market square in Halle, Germany, one day after a deadly anti-Semitic shooting.
Protective Intelligence Lessons From a White Supremacist Attack in Germany
Far more people are alive in Halle, Germany, thanks to a locked door and a shooter's amateurishness. On Oct. 9, a heavily armed white supremacist attacked a synagogue in the eastern German city but failed to gain entrance to the building despite firing several shots. One of the narratives that has emerged from this case is that the attacker was a lone attacker who came from nowhere, ostensibly suggesting that there was no way to detect or prevent his attack. This is utter bunk.
PodcastsJun 24, 2019 | 18:47 GMT
A picture of rusted gates with the star of the former Soviet Union on them.
Backlash With Author Brad Thor
Brad Thor, best-selling author of the Scot Harvath series of thrillers, recently sat down to talk about his latest action-packed novel, Backlash. "You can go into Backlash never having read a Brad Thor book," the author told Fred Burton, Stratfor's Chief Security Officer and host of the Pen and Sword podcast. "In my book, you've got Scot Harvath, who is American's number one operative. [In Backlash] a hostile nation decides 'this guy gets in our way far too often. So what we're gonna do is we're gonna grab him and wring him dry. We're gonna get all the intel we can get out of him and then we're gonna kill him.'" Needless to say, Harvath isn't amused by this approach. The action starts on page one and continues until the very end.  Join Fred and Brad for a wide-reaching conversation -- about the plot of Backlash, the state of contemporary publishing,
SnapshotsMay 31, 2019 | 22:00 GMT
China: Beijing's Latest Trade War Salvo Takes Aim at Foreign Firms
The Chinese Ministry of Commerce on May 31 said China is creating a list of "unreliable entities" that would include foreign companies it considers damaging to the interests of Chinese firms. The list, akin to the U.S. Commerce Department's Entity List that enabled the United States to blacklist Huawei Technologies, would allow Chinese authorities to target foreign companies, organizations and individuals that they find either don't obey market rules or violate contracts, or have blocked or cut off Chinese companies from suppliers for noncommercial reasons. Neither the scope of the list nor specific measures that might be taken against those that land on it were disclosed, but the ministry said details will be announced "soon."
AssessmentsMay 23, 2019 | 09:30 GMT
A smartphone displays Qualcomm's company logo.
What Does the New Qualcomm Ruling Mean for 5G and the U.S.-China Tech War?
In what could become a landmark case, a U.S. district judge on May 21 sided with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission against Qualcomm over its licensing prices. Judge Lucy Koh said that the San Diego-based telecommunications innovator broke U.S. antitrust law by "strangling competition" in the semiconductor chip industry and using its position as a key patent holder to demand unreasonably high licensing fees. Qualcomm will almost certainly appeal the ruling to a higher court, but if it stands, Koh's decision will hit at the heart of Qualcomm's business model, weakening the company at a time when it is in a heated competition with Chinese tech developers.
SITUATION REPORTMay 20, 2019 | 16:12 GMT
China: Western Tech Companies Begin Reducing Business Ties With Huawei After U.S. Blacklisting
Western technology companies, such as Google, Intel and Qualcomm have begun substantially reducing their business ties with Huawei after a U.S. Commerce Department decision to place the Chinese company on a blacklist that requires U.S. companies to obtain a specific export license to sell goods to Huawei, Reuters reported May 19.
AssessmentsApr 17, 2019 | 22:59 GMT
Qualcomm and Apple recently announced a worldwide legal settlement -- effectively ending the various royalty and patent disputes between the two U.S. tech giants.
Qualcomm Ends Its Fight With Apple, but an Antitrust Threat Still Looms
After years of litigation involving a number of countries and disputes, Qualcomm and Apple agreed to put aside their differences and settle their disputes worldwide. As part of their settlement, the two U.S. tech giants have also agreed to a new six-year supply agreement for Apple to buy Qualcomm chips, including its 5G modems. However, while the agreement may have freed Apple to develop 5G-capable iPhones using Qualcomm's chips, Qualcomm is still fending off other legal challenges from global regulators that could place the United States' current tech dominance in peril.
AssessmentsMar 29, 2019 | 09:00 GMT
A Samsung silicon wafer is displayed on March 23, 2011, in San Jose, California.
As the U.S.-China Tech War Rages on, the Electronics Industry Braces for Impact
Semiconductor manufacturers create the computer chips that power today's growing multitude of electronic devices -- from coffee makers to self-driving cars, and everything in between. The industry, therefore, plays a crucial and increasingly embedded role in the global economy. But today, manufacturers are facing the highest levels of geopolitical risk and competition they have seen in decades, as they grapple with a seismic shift away from Moore's law and toward more specialized chips. Meanwhile, the ongoing trade war between the United States and China -- the two most important markets for electronics -- is threatening to fragment the entire industry and globalized tech sector it operates within.
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