U.S. President Donald Trump signed an order that bans in the country the use of eight Chinese applications, including the payment systems Alipay and WeChatPay.
The head of state explained this decision by the fact that the applications gain access to confidential information of users and it can be used by the PRC authorities “to track the location of federal employees and compile personal dossiers on citizens.”
The executive order was signed on January 5, and it will go into effect in 45 days, when Trump leaves the White House. The U.S. Department of Commerce has been instructed to prepare documents that will spell out which payments and transactions will be considered illegal.
Last year, Trump already tried to block the WeChat app, which includes the WeChat Pay service, in the United States. At the time, many companies working with China said the app was important to their business. A federal court in California temporarily blocked the execution of the decree to block WeChat.
As noted by experts, Trump’s current executive order banning eight apps may also cause discontent among American businesses, for which the Chinese market is key.