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In a significant development, the US government has imposed restrictions on the export of Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 4090 graphics cards to China. This move is part of a broader strategy to prevent China from securing cutting-edge AI chips.

The Blockade
The US Department of Commerce has imposed export restrictions on Nvidia GPUs, primarily targeting shipments to China. The restricted chips include Nvidia AI-optimized hardware and, for the first time, a gaming GPU – the GeForce RTX 4090.

The restrictions are not limited to China alone. These restrictions apply to “China and Country Groups D1, D4, and D5, including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Vietnam, but excluding Israel.” However, the primary focus seems to be China.

The Impact
The blocking of a consumer GPU like the RTX 4090 could potentially hurt some companies. One of the major concerns raised by VideoCardz is that this move could adversely affect the supply of these GPUs.

Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 4090 is one of the best graphics cards available in the market. Given its high performance, it falls under the new regulations. The severity of the restrictions includes the restriction of shipments for Nvidia’s AD102 processors, which could impact the supply of GeForce RTX 4090 graphics cards.

The Aftermath
In response to these new export rules, Nvidia may have to initiate production of GeForce RTX 4090 and other AD102-based products outside of China. Transferring production to Taiwan might not be a problem for most brands as they are headquartered in Taiwan. However, Colorful, one of Nvidia’s major customers and one of the world’s largest graphics card manufacturers, only operates in China.

This move could potentially lead to an increase in prices for these GPUs. In fact, following the US ban, Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 is now twice as expensive in China.

Insiders View
The US government’s move to curb exports of high-performance processors, while aimed at tech companies, has raised concerns. It’s unclear how this will impact the global supply chain and whether other countries will follow suit.