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ASML Holding, the most advanced maker of equipment for producing semiconductors, told its employees in the US to refrain from servicing customers in China following new regulations from the Biden administration, according to an internal e-mail sent to staff.

“ASML US employees must refrain — either directly, or indirectly — from servicing, shipping or providing support to any customers in China until further notice, while ASML is actively assessing which particular fabs are affected by this regulation,” according to an e-mail from the US management team addressed to employees in the country. The ban applies to all US employees, including American citizens, green card holders and foreign nationals who live in the country, according to the e-mail.

We are of course taking precautionary measures in order to ensure full compliance with the new regulations.

The US last week banned Chinese companies from buying advanced chip-making equipment or employing American citizens without a licence to prevent the Communist Party from becoming more of an economic and military threat.

The Veldhoven, Netherlands-based ASML has had to strike a challenging balance between the US and China. It has been selling its deep ultraviolet, or DUV, machines to Chinese customers but has held back from offering its more advanced extreme ultraviolet, or EUV, machines.

ASML head of corporate communications Monique Mols confirmed that the e-mail that circulated on social media on Wednesday “is indeed a genuine communication but it was not intended to be shared externally”.

“We are of course taking precautionary measures in order to ensure full compliance with the new regulations while we are assessing the new export control restrictions,” Mols said in an e-mail. “As the memo says, further instructions to our employees will follow once we have done the assessment.”

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