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US pressures Israel to be more vigilant about China’s involvement in tech sector

Israel needs to take greater action to protect its tech industry from Chinese influence, senior US officials said at an annual meeting on China-Israel relations on Thursday.

Jung H. Pak, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary for Multilateral Affairs and Global China Affairs, said at a conference of China-Israel Global Network and Academic Leadership (SIGNAL) that Israel has “advanced critical technology” from Chinese investment. He said further steps should be taken to protect

Park said the United States “does not want Israel or the rest of the world to be cut off from China…We want to facilitate trade in a way that does not threaten the security and human rights values ​​of the United States.”

In recent years, the United States has put pressure on Israel to monitor its trade ties with China more closely, fearing the influence of its authoritarian rival and the Jewish state’s access to high-tech industries.

Israel reportedly told President Joe Biden’s administration in January to keep in touch with the White House regarding key deals with China, and was prepared to reconsider such a deal if the US voiced its opposition. I was informed that there was

A senior Biden official told the Signals conference that China was not adhering to widely respected foreign investment rules. On the contrary, in the past they have been used by China for illicit profit and non-free purposes. “

Park noted the extent of China’s access and influence over Israel’s high-tech sector, from technology transfer programs to recruitment.

She said China’s multi-million dollar investments in various capabilities, such as artificial intelligence, came “not only from legitimate sources such as joint research developed with foreign universities, but also through theft and financial fraud.” I said that it was dropped.

She added that Washington wants all allies to “raise awareness of these risks, undertake risk assessments, and develop risk management measures.”

“Israel was slow to pick up on this challenge,” David Schenker, who served as assistant secretary of state for Near East affairs under Donald Trump, also spoke at the conference.

Bilateral relations between the US and Israel have been resilient, but “problems with China will greatly cloud relations,” he said.

In this Jan. 9, 2019 photo, a security guard stands near the Huawei logo at a new product launch in Beijing. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

SIGNAL founder and CEO Carice Witte said at the conference that technology “is at the heart of the race between the US and China.”

“This rivalry has a huge impact on us. China has an interest in Israel and is looking for technology here. .”

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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