Changing his earlier stance, President Trump gave the go-ahead on Monday for Microsoft to hold negotiations on a potential blockbuster deal to purchase the Chinese-owned video app’s operations in the U.S., The New York Times reported on early Tuesday.
Mr. Trump had threatened to ban TikTok in the U.S. because of the app’s Chinese ownership, which he has called a possible threat to national security.
ByteDance, the Chinese social media giant behind TikTok, took ample precautions in its drive to become a global company. TikTok was made unavailable in China so that the app’s users wouldn’t be subject to the Communist Party’s censorship requirements. User data was stored in Virginia and Singapore.
But suspicion never dissipated that TikTok might be unable to withstand pressure from Beijing. Similar doubts hang over many other Chinese tech companies. TikTok’s sudden change of fortunes could force them to re-evaluate their own international ambitions.
A tide of Chinese scholars have turned against Western-inspired ideas that once flowed in China’s universities, instead promoting the proudly authoritarian worldview ascendant under Xi Jinping, the Communist Party leader, the report said.