Germany suggests monitoring Chinese investment in AI and related industries

Germany plans to increase Chinese investment supervision in key sectors like semiconductors and AI, following the US’s lead, to streamline regulations and prevent potential evasion.

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Following similar actions by US regulators, the German government has suggested harsher export curbs on China for semiconductors and AI technologies. Robert Habeck, a member of the Green coalition and federal minister for economic affairs and climate action, has proposed tightening the screening process for Chinese FDI, particularly in vital fields such as semiconductors and AI. The goal is to streamline and strengthen current regulations while stopping China’s attempts to circumvent them. This suggestion follows a warning from Germany’s foreign affairs minister, Annalena Baerbock, over China’s growing internal authoritarianism and aggressive international policy.

The proposed legislation is awaiting input from various government departments, and discussions on AI regulations are also underway. Germany is the largest economy in Europe, and China is its biggest trading partner. These moves from Germany mirror a broader trend of increasing scrutiny and control of AI development and investment between China and the US. China recently tightened controls on crucial chip-making materials, prompting the US to restrict China’s access to cloud computing services and release new rules regarding investments in these critical sectors. China itself has introduced regulations governing AI development and deployment.