Taiwan Expands Export Restrictions to Russia and Belarus Amid Russia-Ukraine War

In a move to curb the potential use of its high-tech products in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, Taiwan has announced the addition of 77 items to its list of banned machine tools for export to Russia and Belarus. The Ministry of Economic Affairs of Taiwan disclosed this development on Wednesday, underscoring efforts to align with heightened export sanctions imposed by the European Union, the United States, and Japan, as reported by FocusTaiwan.

Export controls on high-tech machine tools to Russia and Belarus were initially imposed by the Taiwanese government in 2023. The recent expansion of export restrictions aims to address concerns over the potential use of Taiwanese equipment in military applications. Notable additions to the control list include CNC machines, machining centers, lathes, turning machines, milling machines, and grinding machines.

According to an official from the International Trade Administration of the Ministry of Economic Affairs of Taiwan, exports of these restricted items to Russia amounted to $45 million last year, constituting 1.47 percent of Taiwan’s total exports to the country.

Amid mounting global apprehension regarding weapons proliferation risks, the possibility of Taiwanese machine tools being utilized in the production of military weaponry could have ripple effects on key component manufacturers in Germany and Japan. This, in turn, could disrupt the upstream and downstream supply chain in the machine tool industry, cautioned the official.

Meanwhile, Lithuania’s recent proposal to establish a register of Motions of Resolution in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) adds another layer to the international response against Russia’s strategic military capabilities. The move reflects a concerted effort to impede Russia’s capacity to manufacture modern military equipment, including unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

Further measures are anticipated as lists of companies facilitating the import of electronics and machine tools to support Russia’s weapons production are set to be disclosed in the near future.

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