What Happened: The U.S. Justice Department has unsealed an indictment accusing a Chinese state-owned company of conspiring to steal trade secrets from U.S. semiconductor firm Micron, Bloomberg reported Nov. 1. The government has charged Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit Co., along with a Taiwanese company and three individuals. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has also announced an initiative to counter Chinese efforts to attain U.S. trade secrets.
Why It Matters: This is the fourth high-profile indictment unsealed in the past two weeks involving Chinese industrial espionage in the semiconductor and aerospace sectors, where China is pushing for self-sufficiency but lags the United States. The attorney general's initiative will likely uncover more cases and is part of a broader U.S. push to limit China's advancements in technology.
Background: The U.S. push against China's policies and practices regarding technology follows U.S. Vice President Mike Pence's recent speech detailing the administration's focus on China as a great power competitor. To counter China's rising influence, the United States has attempted to pressure it in multiple arenas, including trade.
- A Sting Operation Lifts the Lid on Chinese Espionage (Oct. 16, 2018)
- The United States Bites Back Against Chinese Industrial Espionage (Oct. 11, 2018)
- China's Just Been Caught Spying. Or Has It? (Oct. 5, 2018)