Trump scraps plan to ban China’s Alibaba, Tencent, Baidu: Sources | Donald Trump Information

High-ranking US officials had considered plans to add the companies to a list of suspected Chinese military companies that had banned them from US investments.

The administration of US President Donald Trump has abandoned plans to blacklist Chinese technology giants Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu, four people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

High-ranking officials in the administration were considering plans to add the companies to a list of suspected Chinese military companies that would have subjected them to a new US investment ban.

But Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who is widely believed to be more cautious about China, pushed back and froze plans, people said. Even so, the Trump administration plans to move forward this week to add up to nine more Chinese companies to the list, one respondent said.

The Treasury, State Department and Pentagon did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The abrupt decision greatly eases the deep divisions in Washington over China policy, even as outgoing President Trump seeks to cement his tough legacy in China and include President-elect Joe Biden in aggressive measures against the world’s second largest economy.

Last month, the White House blacklisted China’s top chipmaker SMIC and oil giant CNOOC, Reuters first reported. Trump also unveiled an ordinance in January banning US transactions with eight Chinese apps, including Ant Group’s Alipay.

While Trump announced a trade deal between rival nations, relations between Washington and Beijing deteriorated last year over China’s handling of the deadly coronavirus and its crackdown on freedoms in Hong Kong.

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