China says the US TikTok and WeChat bans break WTO rules

TikTok US

China said in a World Trade Organisation meeting that constraints by the United States on Chinese mobile apps TikTok and WeChat are in violation of the human body’s rules, a trade official said.

The Trump government has ordered download cubes on the two mobile apps and arranged ByteDance, the Chinese proprietor of TikTok, to market its operations to a US business entity, citing national security concerns.

A representative for China said in the closed-door meeting on Friday that the steps “are clearly inconsistent with WTO rules, restrict cross-border trading services and violate the basic principles and objectives of the multilateral trading system,” a trade official knowledgeable about the issue, who did not wish to be identified, explained.

“Clear abuse”

The official said the delegate described the US failure to offer tangible evidence of the reasons for its measures that a “clear abuse” of principles.

At the exact same meeting, the United States defended its actions, saying they are supposed to mitigate national security risks, the trade official said. The government has previously said data from American customers is being obtained from the Chinese authorities.

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The workplace of the US Trade Representative had no immediate comment. An official at the Chinese mission to the WTO didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Chinese announcement will not have any effects on its own although China could launch an official lawful complaint about it to the Geneva entire body.

The team at Platform Executive hope you have enjoyed this news article. Initial reporting via our official content partners at Thomson Reuters. Reporting by Emma Farge. Additional reporting by Phil Blenkinsop. Editing by Kirsten Donovan.

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