WASHINGTON — President Trump on Tuesday signed an govt order prohibiting transactions with eight Chinese language software program functions, together with Alipay, the cost platform owned by Ant Group, and WeChat Pay, which is owned by Tencent.
The transfer, two weeks earlier than the tip of Mr. Trump’s time period, may assist lock in his administration’s harsher stance towards China and is prone to additional rankle Beijing.
The chief order, issued late Tuesday, will bar any transactions with “individuals that develop or management” the apps of Alipay, CamScanner, QQ Pockets, SHAREit, Tencent QQ, VMate, WeChat Pay, and WPS Workplace and their subsidiaries after a interval of 45 days.
Within the order, the president mentioned that “the tempo and pervasiveness of the unfold in the US of sure related cellular and desktop functions and different software program developed or managed by individuals within the Folks’s Republic of China” continued to threaten American nationwide safety. “Right now, motion have to be taken to handle the menace posed by these Chinese language related software program functions,” he wrote.
The Trump administration has ramped up tariffs and waged a commerce battle in opposition to China in recent times. It has additionally focused Chinese language-owned social media companies, saying they supply a conduit for Chinese language espionage and pose a nationwide safety danger to the American public. Final fall, the Trump administration issued executive orders banning two different standard Chinese language-owned social media companies, TikTok and WeChat.
However each of these bans have turn into entangled in litigation, and the companies proceed to function in the US. That raises the query of whether or not American courts will situation an injunction to cease Mr. Trump’s newest bans on Chinese language companies as effectively.
In an announcement, Wilbur Ross, the commerce secretary, mentioned he had directed his division to start enacting the orders, “together with figuring out prohibited transactions associated to sure Chinese language related software program functions.”
“I stand with President Trump’s dedication to defending the privateness and safety of People from threats posed by the Chinese language Communist Get together,” he added.
The incoming Biden administration has not clarified whether or not it would proceed to attempt to implement Mr. Trump’s bans. Reuters earlier reported the signing.
This can be a growing story. Examine again for updates.