Sunday, September 20, 2020

Multinational companies concerned over US ban on Chinese tech firms

Aug 21. 2020
The messenger app WeChat and short-video app TikTok are seen near China and US flags in this illustration picture taken Aug 7, 2020. (PHOTO / CHINADAILY.COM.CN)
The messenger app WeChat and short-video app TikTok are seen near China and US flags in this illustration picture taken Aug 7, 2020. (PHOTO / CHINADAILY.COM.CN)
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By China Daily/ANN

PARIS - Several major US multinational companies have expressed concern over Washington's ban on Chinese tech companies, according to a report by French newspaper Le Monde.

During a telephone conference held last week, more than a dozen US tech giants, including Apple, told the White House that Chinese companies such as Huawei, TikTok owner Bytedance and WeChat owner Tencent are important partners, and that the ban could have a severe impact on US companies, the report said.

Apple said it could have a lot to lose as a result of such a ban, as Chinese customers are unlikely to buy iPhones if the hugely popular app WeChat cannot be installed on them, Le Monde reported.

A total of 15-20 percent of Apple's sales are from China, it reported, adding that according to Research Gate analyst Ming-Chih Kuo, the ban could reduce the company's sales in China by 25-30 percent.

Other US tech giants, such as Intel and Nvidia, 25-30 percent of whose revenues comes from China, as well as Geneva-headquartered electronics and semiconductor manufacturer STMicroelectronics, have said the sanctions will negatively affect their activities, it reported.

Meanwhile, Ford, Walmart, the NBA and other US companies and associations, whose games are broadcast in China by Tencent, as well as Warner Music Group and video game studios Riot Games, Supercell and Epic Games, who have Tencent in their capital, have also raised similar concerns.

Citing a poll published on Aug 11 by the US-China Chamber of Commerce, the media report said 86 percent of all the 100 members of the chamber believe the tensions between Washington and Beijing have already affected their activities.

Washington announced on Monday its decision to take further restrictive measures against Huawei, adding the Chinese tech giant's affiliates to the US Commerce Department's economic blacklist and cutting off its access to advanced US chips.

The unilateral decision marks the latest episode in the current US administration's reckless pursuit of a digital gunboat policy under the guise of so-called national security concerns. Steps are also being taken to crack down on a slew of other Chinese tech companies, including Bytedance and Tencent.

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