According to a recent report from Nikkei Asia, Russia has found a new way to access high-end semiconductors from Japan.
Russia Acquiring Japanese Semiconductor Is One of The Country's Many Ways to Counter US Sanctions
Since 2022, Russia has been facing strict restrictions from the US and its allies regarding technological support. After the Ukraine conflict, things got worse, with companies like Intel and AMD announcing shutting down their operations in Russia. This significantly impacted the country's economy, networking, and military industry, which heavily relied on components for warfare needs.
In response to the conflict and global sanctions, Russia did switch to in-house production, developing the first batch of its "Baikal" processors designed for server applications. However, those, too, were based on ARM's Cortex architecture, and acquiring it was certainly an issue for the country. However, it is now reported that Russia has arranged to bring Japanese semiconductors into the country by dealing with third-party countries such as China. Through this, Russia bypasses Japan's sanctions laws, enabling it to acquire semiconductor equipment.
Apart from Japan, Russia is also at the forefront when buying chips from China. It was reported previously that a Russian company Dannie introduced MBX-Z60A micro-ATX motherboards which featured the Chinese Zhaoxin's KaiXian KX-6640MA processor based on 16nm (the company also plans to launch its next-gen CPUs later this year). It was an old technology. However, it was the only way the country could acquire such chips.
The sanctions imposed on hostile nations such as Russia by the US and its allies have undoubtedly hindered the industrial growth of such nations. However, we have seen how such countries try to counter the sanctions through local production or third-party sourcing. The US has certainly recognized this, which is why it may choose to loosen its trade restrictions with the countries that have been sanctioned.