On Friday 18 September, the Trump administration announced it was in the process of finalising a potential ban of the popular Chinese-owned appls TikTok and Wechat. That ban was meant to go in effect yesterday, 20 September and would have made downloading the two applications from the Apple store and Google store impossible for US citizens.
Now, it appears as though the ban has been put on hold, for the time being. This is because President Donald Trump came out on Saturday night and announced he had given his blessing over a deal between Oracle, Walmart, and TikTok, resulting in a one-week delay from the original ban, according to reports from The Verge.
— ByteDance (@BytedanceTalk) September 20, 2020
The deal between TikTok, Oracle and Walmart is a far cry from the Trump Administration’s original demand which requested an American company take full ownership of TikTok’s US operations. Instead, the new deal will see Oracle become a “trusted tech partner,” and will be tasked with hosting all US user data. Both Walmart and Oracle will also be able claim a 20 percent cumulative stake in the newly formed company called TikTok Global, while ByteDance, the Chinese company that owns TikTok will maintain 80 percent ownership of TikTok Global.
The details surrounding this deal are still limited, but all parties involved in the deal have agreed that TikTok Global headquarters will be based in the US and would create around 25,000 new jobs. There is however already a slight disagreement between Trump and ByteDance.
According to Reuters, during Trumps announcement where he had given his blessing for the deal to go through, he also mentioned that TikTok would make a $5 billion donation towards US education as part of the deal, which came as a surprise to ByteDance.
On Monday, ByteDance responded to the $5 billion donation announcement by Trump in a blog post saying, “As for the so-called $5 billion tax to the U.S. Treasury, that refers to an estimate of the corporate income tax and other taxes TikTok will have to pay in coming years as part of its business development,” according to reports from Bloomberg.
Despite this minor disagreement over $5 billion, the TikTok and WeChat bans will remain postponed to until 27 September 2020.