US Eyes Expanding China Tech Ban To Quantum Computing and AI

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Bloomberg: The Biden administration is exploring the possibility of new export controls that would limit China’s access to some of the most powerful emerging computing technologies, according to people familiar with the situation. The potential plans, which are in an early stage, are focused on the still-experimental field of quantum computing, as well as artificial intelligence software, according to the people, who asked not to be named discussing private deliberations. Industry experts are weighing in on how to set the parameters of the restrictions on this nascent technology, they said. The efforts, if implemented, would follow separate restrictions announced earlier this month aimed at stunting Beijing’s ability to deploy cutting-edge semiconductors in weapons and surveillance systems.

National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, in a speech last month on technology, competitiveness and national security, referred to “computing-related technologies, including microelectronics, quantum information systems and artificial intelligence” as among developments “set to play an outsized importance over the coming decade.” He also noted the importance of export controls to “maintain as large of a lead as possible” over adversaries. Expanding the wall around advanced technologies risks further antagonizing China and forcing other countries to pick sides between the world’s two top economies. The new ideas have been shared with US allies, according to the people. Officials are still determining how to frame the controls on quantum computing, which will probably focus on the level of output and the so-called error correction rate, the people said. […] The Biden administration is also working on an executive order for an outbound investment review mechanism that would scrutinize money heading to certain Chinese technologies, and the quantum computing and artificial intelligence controls could be included, one of the people said. That could incorporate some aspects similar to a measure pushed by senators Bob Casey, a Pennsylvania Democrat, and John Cornyn, a Texas Republican.