China is getting stingy with its drones and supercomputers. Citing unspecified national security concerns, the country is imposing export restrictions on supercomputers capable of 8 teraflop speeds and high-end aerial drones, according to China’s official news agency.
Supercomputing systems faster than eight tera floating point operations per second (TFLOPs) cannot be exported out of the country from August 15.
China is currently home to the world’s fastest supercomputer, Tianhe-2, with a performance of over 33,000 Teraflops.
As Chinese drones’ technical abilities are now among the best in the world, state news agency Xinhua said, the country also needs to protect its intellectual property rights.
It was unclear if the move was in response to any drones or supercomputers falling into the hands of militant groups.
China says it faces a threat from Islamist militants in its far Western region of Xinjiang, though the main group Beijing says operates there, the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, is not believed by most foreign experts to exist in a large or coherent form.
The restrictions follow the announcement of the White House’sNational Strategic Computing Initiative last week, which aims to unite US government supercomputing projects to create the firstexoflop computer. Last month, meanwhile, Pakistan shot down what officials alleged was an Indian spy drone that appeared to have been made in China.
But the new export restrictions may have little to do with either incident. Instead, they look more like a paradoxical form of marketing.
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