Taiwan says it has tightened export controls after report of Russian arms use

The Ministry of Economic Affairs of Taiwan has included the Russian supplier of iMachine tools in its sanctions list. Sellers of high-tech goods have been instructed to ensure that their shipments do not reach Russia through third countries. This is stated in a message on the department’s website.

The government also intends to strengthen control over supplies of Taiwanese technologies to the Russian Federation and Belarus through third countries. It is primarily about Turkey and the UAE.

The Ministry has provided a list of countries from which goods are likely to be rerouted to Russia. Turkey, the UAE, and Central Asian countries are among those included. The initial penalty for violating the sanctions regime against Russia and Belarus has been increased by 15 times, reaching one million yuan (approximately $140,000).

As for today, almost 1,900 subjects are included in this list.

The authorities highlighted that this response was triggered by press reports on Taiwan’s supply of machine tools to the Russian military industry. In January, investigative journalists discovered that Taipei had become one of the largest suppliers of machine tools to Russia. Although local machines were considered inferior, they were more affordable than their American, European, and Japanese counterparts, as reported by The Reporter.

The publication quoted an anonymous employee of Taiwan’s industrial association who attended an equipment exhibition in mainland China in 2023. The event was attended by Russian buyers ready to purchase machines on the spot and in cash, according to the text.

Taiwan has joined Western sanctions imposed against Russia following the invasion of Ukraine. The partially recognized state is one of the world’s largest suppliers of microchips. Due to restrictions imposed by Taipei’s authorities, the Russian industry is forced to seek chips on the black market.

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