China announces retaliation for US measures against TikTok

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China will act against foreign companies and individuals who “endanger” their sovereignty and security, according to new rules approved this Saturday by the Ministry of Commerce of the Asian country after the US measures against the Chinese applications TikTok and WeChat. Washington announced on Friday that it will ban the download of both from this Sunday.

Commerce’s announcement does not directly target any company, but detailed the issuance of new rules related to its anticipated list of “unreliable entities” announced more than 15 months ago and which has yet to be published. According to the statement released this Saturday, the list will include companies and individuals that “violate market regulations “ in the Asian country, “break agreements“with Chinese companies, adopt”discriminatory measures“against them or”harm the interests of China’s sovereignty, security or development“.

Last May, the Chinese official media indicated that among the affected companies could be Apple, Cisco Systems, Qualcomm o Boeing.

According to the Commerce statement, foreign companies and individuals included in it will suffer restrictions or the complete ban on exporting or importing with China, as well as investing in the country. Likewise, an office will be established to investigate and rule on the cases of entities or individuals who are suspected of contravening the new rules.

Voltage escalation

The publication of these new regulations comes at a time of special tension between China and the US after the problems with technology and the visit of the US Undersecretary of State for Economic Growth and Energy, Keith Krach, to Taiwan.

Regarding the veto of TikTok and WeChat, Commerce stressed that China opposes “any form of unilateralism and protectionism“and will adopt the measures” necessary to defend “their companies.

Beijing’s announcement of such a “black list” last year sparked concern among foreign companies about how such a relationship would be implemented.

Commerce added that the list “will help maintain a free and fair international economic and trade order” and “will protect the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese companies, other organizations and individuals.”

Earlier this month, Chinese Vice Premier Hu Chunhua and Vice Minister of Commerce Wang Shouwen assured that the country will continue to remove barriers to allow foreign companies access to its market.

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