ASML did not discriminate with its personnel policy

Photo credit: Politie/Studio040

ASML’s personnel policy, in which people can be refused on the basis of their nationality, especially Syrian or Iranian, is not discriminatory. That is the opinion of the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights.

At the end of 2021, a Syrian engineer was denied a job at ASML because of his nationality. This happened after a long application procedure. The story caused angry reactions from the municipality of Eindhoven and anti-discrimination agency ‘Radar’.

After which the Human Rights body in the Netherlands decided to investigate the situation. However, that body is of the opinion that ASML did not discriminate when rejecting a Syrian and an Iranian on the basis of their nationality.

American technologies

The chip machines that ASML makes use American technology for which ASML must have a permit. The technologies can also be used for military purposes and must therefore be kept out of the hands of countries with which the US is at odds. In addition to Syria and Iran, Cuba and North Korea also face same restrictions.

Fines and prosecution

The US legislation also applies across the country’s borders, said the Human Rights Council. ASML risks high fines and criminal prosecution if it goes against American regulations. ASML could also lose the license to use the American technologies, which poses a real threat to the chip machine manufacturer’s production process.


The Netherlands Institute for Human Rights therefore believes that ASML may also impose requirements on the nationality of the applicant for specific positions – in which American technologies are used.

Incidentally, people of Syrian or Iranian origin are not rejected if they have Dutch nationality or if they have a permanent residence permit for the Netherlands.

Source: Studio040
Translated by: Yawar Abbas

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