Japan, U.S., South Korea oppose status quo change amid Taiwan tension

Senior diplomats from Japan, the United States and South Korea have said they oppose any attempt to change the status quo of territories by force, as China increasingly asserts itself in the Asia-Pacific region.

Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and South Korean Foreign Minister Park Jin met in New York on the sidelines of the annual session of the United Nations General Assembly.

According to Kyodo News, the Japanese government said – in a separate press release – that the three countries will advance their tripartite security cooperation, while strengthening the deterrence capabilities of the US-Japan and US-Korea alliances.

The meeting also highlighted the countries’ expanding trilateral cooperation beyond North Korea, Antony Blinken said at the start of the talks that Tripartite relationships are important to the United States to effectively address regional security issues and global challenges.

The three affirmed their joint commitment to supporting the needs of island nations in the Pacific, a region in which China is gaining influence. They discussed better access to climate finance and efforts to strengthen maritime security and combat illegal fishing, according to the joint statement.

They also condemned Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and underlined thatthey “will oppose any attempt to alter the status quo of territories and areas by force or coercion anywhere in the world”.

The assertion came amid fears in the West that Taiwan could become the “next Ukraine”. Tensions between the United States and China have escalated following the visit of Speaker of the United States House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan. China then carried out large-scale military exercises in the surrounding area.

The question of semiconductors

Geopolitics aside, this three-way alliance of major chip-making nations aims to secure their semiconductor supply chainin order to prevent China from reaching the forefront of the industry, analysts told CNBC.

The United States, South Korea, Japan and Taiwan, which have strong semiconductor industrieshave sought to forge partnerships around this critical technology.

“The immediate reason for all this is undoubtedly China,” said Pranay Kotasthane, chair of the Takshashila Institution’s high-tech geopolitics program, in reference to the alliances.

The latter highlighted the importance of chips for economies and national security, while underlining the desire of countries to stem China’s progress in critical technology.

Pranay Kotasthane explained in the latest episode of the podcast “Beyond the Valley” from CNBC that the United States has lost its dominance in manufacturing. Over the past 15 years or so, TSMC of Taiwan and Samsung of South Korea have come to dominate the manufacture of the world’s most advanced semiconductors.

Taiwan and South Korea thus represent approximately 80% of the global foundry market. In fact, the concentration of power in the hands of a few economies and companies poses a risk to business continuity, especially in places of contention like Taiwan, Pranay Kotasthane explained.

Beijing regards Taiwan as a renegade province and has promised a “reunification” of the island with mainland China. “The other geopolitical importance is simply related to Taiwan’s central role in the semiconductor supply chain. And because China-Taiwan tensions have increased, there’s a concern that, you know, since a lot of the manufacturing is going on in Taiwan, what if China were to occupy or even just that there’s tensions between the two countries? »said the expert.

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These alliances are therefore designed to cut China off from the global supply chain. “In my opinion, I think that in the short term, China’s development in this sector will be severely limited. [à la suite de ces alliances] », said Pranay Kotasthane.

China and the United States see each other as technological rivals in areas ranging from semiconductors to artificial intelligence. As part of this battle, the United States has sought to cut China off from critical semiconductors and tools through export restrictions.

“The aim of all these efforts is to prevent China from developing the capacity to produce advanced semiconductors domestically,” Paul Triolo, head of technology policy at consultancy Albright Stonebridge, told CNBC, referring to the goals of the various partnerships.

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Japan, U.S., South Korea oppose status quo change amid Taiwan tension

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