December 21, 2023
The Bottom Line Up Front

C4ADS supported new analysis from Bloomberg tracing the US-made integrated circuits making their way to the Russian defense-industrial base — and the role of Hong Kong in facilitating that trade.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — C4ADS is proud to have supported new analysis from Bloomberg, published earlier today, tracing integrated circuits making their way to the Russian defense-industrial sector. As war continues in Ukraine, this investigation highlights the role that Hong Kong specifically continues to play in facilitating Russian procurement of these microelectronics and emphasizes the consequences of that behavior given targeted global export control and sanctions designations intended to curb support to the Putin regime.

Integrated circuits, the keystone of modern electronics, are critical to the development, production, and use of Russian military systems (per the European Union and authorities across the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan) — including in their war against Ukraine.

From January to June 2023, publicly available data indicates that Hong Kong facilitated microelectronics shipments worth approximately $528M to Russian companies — most produced by the foreign subsidiaries of major American and European companies like Texas Instruments, Analog Devices, Xilinx, STMicroelectronics, and Intel. In fact, Hong Kong surpassed even mainland China in this trade with Russia in June 2023, shipping hundreds of millions of dollars more of the microelectronics than the next largest global exporter — despite targeted global export control and sanctions designations.

This new investigation from Bloomberg highlights the importance of enhanced due diligence when exporting to transshipment hubs like Hong Kong, and encourages companies to better engage with their customers regarding the ultimate end-use of their products.

For additional information about our work on Russia- and Ukraine-related issues, please visit the “Russia” initiative page on our website.