Sanctions and supply chain issues have created a parallel market in China, where these chips are sold for 500 times the market value.
Chinese customs officials caught a woman trying to smuggle semiconductors inside a prosthetic belly while pretending to be pregnant. This arrest sheds light on the reality of smuggling that has emerged in the world’s second-largest economy following the sanctions imposed by the United States of America.
According to bloomberg, a woman was caught by the authorities while trying to enter Zhuhai via Macau on November 25. According to customs authorities, the suspect had more than 202 processors and nine smartphones.
The woman came to the attention of the authorities when she was asked what month she was pregnant. “She said she was five or six months pregnant but she had a big belly that looked like she was in her third trimester,” Chinese officials explained.
The economic crisis caused by covid-19 and all the problems that have arisen in the supply chain have opened the door to the emergence of a black market in semiconductors in a country that needs these advanced chips to produce millions of products.
The situation has worsened recently as the Joe Biden administration tightened sanctions on China, focusing on developing advanced technologies, especially for military use.
According to the North American economic publication, the situation is so serious that the prices of these devices reach values up to 500 times their market price, which creates ideal conditions for creating an entire parallel market with telecom operators and resellers.