China will not accept the US 'theft' of TikTok

China will not accept the United States' "theft" of a Chinese technology company, state media said on Tuesday, and Beijing has ways to retaliate against Washington's pressure on the Chinese-owned short video app TikTok.

The Trump administration's pressuring of ByteDance, TikTok's parent company in China, to sell its US operations to Microsoft or risk closure amounts to a "smash and grab," the state-run China Daily newspaper wrote in an editorial.

"While Beijing will likely be cautious in imposing equivalent restrictions on US companies in China, it has plenty of ways to retaliate," the paper said, as quoted by dpa.

Microsoft said on Monday it was in discussions with ByteDance to buy parts of TikTok after US President Donald Trump gave the companies 45 days to reach a deal. Trump had initially threatened to ban TikTok in the US on national security grounds.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said over the weekend that Washington may take action "shortly" against TikTok and other Chinese companies believed to share data with the Chinese government.

ByteDance said in a statement late Sunday it was still committed to being a global company despite "complex and unimaginable difficulties" including the "tense" international political environment. 

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