On Jan.6, China’s Foreign Ministry responded to U.S. President Donald Trump’s executive order banning transactions with eight Chinese software applications, stating that China will take necessary measures to protect their legitimate rights and firmly opposing the Trump administration’s wrongdoing for its unreasonable restraints on Chinese apps.
During yesterday’s daily press briefing, the Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said this executive order is another example of the U.S. abusing national power to violate international trading rules and disrupting the global market order.
“We urge the U.S. to abide by the rules of market economy and fair competition, as well as international economic and trade rules to provide a fair and non-discriminatory environment for foreign firms to invest and operate in the U.S.,” said Hua.
The banned Chinese companies are Alipay, CamScanner, QQ Wallet, SHAREit, Tencent QQ, VMate, WeChat Pay, and Beijing Kingsoft Office Software’s WPS Office. Hua also pointed out these apps have won great popularity amid the pandemic as they offer consumers contactless payment options and increase remote working efficiency.
“To ban apps that can reduce socioeconomic costs and aid pandemic control is very unwise,” stressed Hua.
WPS Office, one of the banned apps, said in a statement that in the short term the firm did not expect to be impacted substantially by the executive order since most of the global customers are using the platform for free. China has been developing coding technology for 30 years, so the firm’s technology can run independently.
On Dec.21, the U.S. Department of Commerce added 58 Chinese companies to a “military end user” list, barring them from buying U.S. services and technology.
“Trump has made it very clear that he wants to extend his influence into the next presidential election if not being the next president as that becomes less and less likely,” said current affairs commentator Einar Tangen in an interview on CGTN. “In fact, there is no proof at this point that these Chinese apps have collected [users’] information or used that.”
As Hua put it during her press briefing, technology development should be a force for the greater good and should serve the well-being of all mankind, rather than being a tool for political manipulation. In the same vein, the spokeswoman emphasized the U.S. should not suppress China’s leading science and technology firms without legitimate reasons as it would only show how diffident America is right now.