The US govt seems to be in no hurry to enforce a ban on TikTok. The outgoing Trump administration said that it would comply with a court order in favor of the Chinese-owned app. TikTok was banned based on national security concerns voiced by US officials. The Commerce Department, however, said it was holding off due to an injunction by a federal judge issued on Oct 30. “The department is complying with the terms of this order,” it said in a statement.
TikTok asked a judge to block the Trump Administration’s attempt to ban its app, suggesting its forced deal with Oracle and Walmart remains unsettled. Trump Administration had granted a “blessing” to TikTok by extending the deadline to 24th September 2020. Interestingly, a US judge, last Saturday, blocked Trump’s ban on WeChat – which was TikTok’s partner in the ban order. Hence, this could be considered as TikTok’s attempt to seek help from the US state court.
ByteDance said that China will need to approve its proposed deal with Oracle Corp for TikTok app, , indicating that it still has a lot of hurdles to escape TikTok ban. ByteDance came up with a new plan and made Oracle Corp its “trusted tech partner”. This, however, did not satisfy the Trump administration and he said that the app would be banned as early as Sunday in the US. ByteDance is facing strong criticism in China for seeming to give in to US pressure.
China would prefer to see the short video app TikTok shut down its operation in the USA, rather than a forced sale by the Trump administration, reported Reuters. The news report, quoting three people with direct knowledge of the matter, said that Bejing believes a forced sale would make China appear weak. Microsoft and Oracle are in talks with Bytedance for the purchase of TikTok assets in the USA. Trump’s deadline for sale will end in mid-September.
Samsung’s display unit has reportedly applied for an export licence to continue supplying to Huawei Technologies ahead of U.S. export restrictions taking effect next week. The Trump administration had barred American and non-American firms from supplying components built using American technology/software to Huawei. If any firm was still interested in selling, it will have to seek a special license.
Huawei Technologies, to secure its survival, is focussing on its cloud business which still has access to US chips despite sanctions against the company. The Trump administration restricted technology exports to Chinese companies, citing security reasons. This led to Huawei running out of processor chips, hurting its telecom business. Its cloud computing biz sells computing power, storage and AI access to the companies and has been growing rapidly.