Trump signals pressure on Alibaba, other Chinese companies 

  17 August 2020    Read: 882
Trump signals pressure on Alibaba, other Chinese companies 

President Trump signaled he would increase pressure on Chinese-owned companies, such as e-commerce giant Alibaba, after his latest moves against TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, AP reports.

At a press conference in Bedminster, N.J., on Saturday, Trump was asked whether he would consider banning other Chinese-owned companies, such as Alibaba.

“Well, we’re looking at other things, yes,” Trump said without going into detail, Reutersreported.

The question came after Trump on Friday gave ByteDance 90 days to divest the U.S. operations of its TikTok app. The executive order cited “credible evidence” suggesting ByteDance “might take action that threatens to impair the national security of the United States.”

ByteDance was also ordered to delete "any data obtained or derived" from TikTok users in the U.S.

Last week, Trump had ordered sweeping but vague bans on dealings with the Chinese owners of TikTok and the messaging app WeChat, saying they are a threat to U.S. national security, foreign policy and the economy. It remains unclear what the TikTok orders mean for the app’s 100 million U.S. users, many of them teenagers or young adults who use it to post and watch short-form videos.

Microsoft is in talks to buy parts of TikTok.

In regards to Alibaba, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said at a press conference earlier this month in Washington that the company needs to ensure Americans’ personal information could not be obtained through Chinese cloud software.

“We’re protecting Americans’ most sensitive personal information and our businesses’ most valuable intellectual property – including COVID vaccine research – from being accessed on cloud-based systems run by companies such as Alibaba, Baidu, China Mobile, China Telecom, and Tencent,” Pompeo said at the time.

“The State Department will work closely with Commerce and other agencies to limit the ability of Chinese cloud service providers to collect, to store, and to process vast amounts of data and sensitive information here in the United States.”

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