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Chinese government could now block TikToK sale to US companies

By Samuel Martinez September 1, 2020, 5:30 pm

The famous Chinese video-sharing social networking service owned by ByteDance has also suffered attacks by the US Government over alleged privacy and security concerns. On August 1, President Trump admitted he wanted to ban TikTok in the United States, and he also said that he wasn’t happy with US companies’ interest in acquiring the app.

Things changed some days later as he signed an executive order on August 6 that would block transactions with Bytedance on September 20, which then extended to November 12, giving the Chinese company five more days to close any deal with US companies. The most interested in a possible acquisition have been Microsoft, Twitter, and Google Discover, with Walmart recently joining in together with Microsoft. However, things may get a bit more complicated as the Chinese government may block a possible TikTok sale.


A new turn of events could now block TikTok from selling its US operations to a US company. The Chinese government has changed its rules on tech exports, which bans the commercialization of specific technology categories to foreign countries. And now, according to The Guardian, some of these changes may seem as intended to include the video-sharing app.

“Late on Friday, Beijing issued new restrictions or bans on tech exports, requiring companies to seek government approval – a process that can take up to 30 days. In mid-August, Trump gave the company 90 days to sell up or face a shutdown.
“The rules, which hadn’t been updated since 2008, are believed to be aimed at delaying the sale of TikTok to US buyers, as ordered by the US president.
“Some technologies were removed from the list of regulated exports, including vaccine technologies, but the 23 new additions included tech relating to AI interfaces, voice recognition, and content recommendation analysis.
“TikTok’s recommendation algorithm relies on domestic technology that might need to be transferred to a new overseas owner.”

Further, Professor Cui Fan, a Chinese trade expert, told news agency Xinhua that:

“China was not in favour of “decoupling” from the US, but “some forefront technologies, however, might impact national security and public welfare, and need to be included in catalogue management.
“Cui said ByteDance should “seriously and cautiously consider whether it is necessary to suspend the [TikTok sale negotiations]”.

Source 9to5Mac


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