China’s government said on Thursday that it would oppose any forced sale the United States plans to impose on TikTok’s Chinese owner in order for the social media platform to continue to be used within the country, given the security risk.
Just hours before the Chinese social media app CEO was set to testify in front of Congress on Thursday, China’s Ministry of Commerce spokeswoman Shu Jueting stated, “If the news is true, China will resolutely oppose it,” giving no indication of what Beijing would do in response.
Shu was referring to the news that the Biden administration wants ByteDance, TikTok’s Chinese owner, to sell the app or face the possibility of being banned altogether.
This comes as lawmakers and regulators have continued to pressure TikTok and its ability to be used in the United States as questions arise about how much control the Chinese government has over American users’ data.
The spokeswoman claimed that having a forced sale “would seriously damage investors from multiple countries including China” and hurt “confidence to invest in the United States.”
This comes after the popular Chinese social media app has already been banned on U.S. government devices for being a potential national security problem — when a provision was added to the $1.7 trillion omnibus spending bill President Joe Biden signed into law — while numerous governors have also taken similar action in their respective states.
Additionally, there is currently legislation in the U.S. Senate — backed by the Biden administration — that would empower the secretary of Commerce to “ban or prohibit” foreign technology in six adversary nations from entering the United States. This would ultimately include TikTok’s China-based parent company.
This is not TikTok’s first time dealing with the U.S. attempting to eliminate the social media app. In 2020, then-President Donald Trump’s administration tried to ban TikTok, which resulted in the Chinese social media app’s parent company divesting the platform to an American company.
Jacob Bliss is a reporter for Breitbart News. Write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @JacobMBliss.
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