President Trump issued a pair of executive orders targeting Chinese apps WeChat and TikTok.
Citing national security concerns, the order bans anyone in the U.S. or under U.S. jurisdiction from transacting with the apps or their Chinese owners, ByteDance (TikTok) and Tencent (WeChat). The orders take effect in 45 days.
- Prying Eyes. According to the orders, the apps collect data that “threatens to allow the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans’ personal and proprietary information”.
- Tencent Short. The Tencent sanction could have big implications. The $700 billion firm owns a portfolio of popular mobile games but, so far, the order only affects WeChat.
- TheyChat. Most of WeChat’s 1.2 billion users are in China but the app is commonly used by foreigners to communicate with their contacts in China.
The rebuttal: TikTok fired back saying that the move “sets a dangerous precedent”.
How Does It Affect My Wallet?
The U.S.-China standoff is rapidly spreading to new fronts. Now, the U.S. is taking on Chinese apps, and you can bet your bottom dollar that the Chinese government will respond in kind.
- Banned. Google and Apple app stores might ultimately be forced to ban WeChat and TikTok as a result of the executive orders.
It feels like we’re lightyears away from the “phase-one” trade deal and the associated feel-good vibes. China and the U.S. are flirting with a Cold War and, if left unchecked, the growing conflict between the world’s two largest economies could ultimately spell concerns for global growth.
President Trump signed two executive orders that will restrict people in the U.S. from transacting with TikTok and WeChat or their parent companies, effective in 45 days.
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