The U.S. government has added 36 Chinese firms to its Entity List trade blacklist, including China’s top storage chipmaker YMTC, in what is its latest effort to restrict Beijing’s ability to acquire high-end US chip technology, according to a Bloomberg report.

Most of the entities added are involved in AI chip research and development, manufacturing, and sales with the US claiming an attempt by the companies to acquire "U.S. origin items in support of China’s military modernization," an activity it considers "contrary to the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States."

It however audited and removed 25 Chinese companies from its watch list of "unverified" firms that might have military connections, following end-user checks.

"Today we are building on the actions we took in October to protect US national security by severely restricting the PRC’s ability to leverage artificial intelligence, advanced computing, and other powerful, commercially available technologies for military modernisation and human rights abuses," said Alan Estevez, the US Commerce Department’s industry and security undersecretary, in a statement on Thursday.

This comes after the U.S. government blacklisted Chinese telecoms equipment giant Huawei Technologies Co and surveillance camera maker Hikvision in late October, citing "a risk to national security."