China says it place export restrictions on drones and supercomputers from the middle of August to protect national security, citing fears that such equipment could fall into the hands of militant groups, according to China’s state news agency Xinhua.
China places controls on drone export
China’s drone technology currently lags some way behind the US and Israel, who are the largest vendors of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). But China is currently attracting more foreign buyers such as Nigeria, Pakistan and Egypt.
Beijing previously has limited success exported its manned aircraft, but hopes to do better with drones because they’re cheaper and can be manufactured more easily.
Xinhua said the main focus on the new restrictions was on drones that can stay in the air for lengthy periods at high altitude.
“The main aim of the export restrictions on drones is due to anti-terror needs, to avoid large, high-tech drones from falling into the hands of illegal elements”.
Chinese drones are now becoming some of the best in the world, Xinhua says, so the country needs to protect its intellectual property, another reason for the new restrictions.
It seems that consumer-focused drones such as those by Parrot and DJI will not be affected by the new controls.