In a daily news briefing on Tuesday, China urged the US to stop suppressing foreign companies by overstretching the concept of national security, following the White House’s decision to set a deadline for the removal of TikTok from federal devices. “How unsure of itself can the world’s top superpower be to fear a young people’s favorite app like that?” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning questioned.
Mao criticized the US government’s practice of abusing state power to suppress foreign companies, stating that China firmly opposes such actions. She further called on the US to respect the principles of market economics and fair competition, and provide an open, non-discriminatory environment for foreign companies to invest and operate in the country.
The US has been ramping up pressure on Chinese tech companies, citing concerns over national security. Last year, former President Donald Trump signed executive orders banning TikTok and WeChat from US app stores, citing national security concerns. The ban was temporarily blocked by a US court, and the Biden administration has since put the orders under review.
TikTok has been a major point of contention between the US and China, with the former accusing the app of posing a national security threat due to its ownership by Chinese tech giant, ByteDance. TikTok has denied any wrongdoing and has taken measures to address security concerns, including setting up a transparency center in the US to allow independent experts to review its content moderation policies.