U.S. general manager says TikTok 'here for the long run'

He is banning TikTok from the USA, Donald Trump told reporters on Air Force One

The companies are now trying to get clarity about the White House's position, and whether the app would keep normal operations in the U.S. if the sale is finalized.

However, there have been growing fears the company could become a front for Chinese spying efforts.

But sources quoted by worldwide media said ByteDance would exit completely and Microsoft Corp would take over TikTok in the US.

However, similar denials have not been enough to stop another Chinese tech company, Huawei, from being banned in the USA - with the White House subsequently pressuring allies to follow suit (GCSB Minister Andrew Little says our spy agency's decision to ban Huawei was made independently).

Under the new deal, the company would exit completely and turn over 100 per cent control of the app's United States wing to Microsoft. Previously, ByteDance was aiming to retain a minority stake in the usa business, a proposal the White House rejected.

However, this still remains unclear. The White House has yet to comment on whether it would allow the divestiture to take place.

Trump told reporters on Air Force One that he will sign an executive order as early as Saturday banning TikTok from the United States.

The White House has not made any official pronouncements as of yet on this proposed deal.

"We are not an M&A [mergers and acquisitions] country".

TikTok said Saturday it has no plans to leave the U.S.

Microsoft is the fourth-largest digital ad company in the U.S., lagging behind giants Google, Facebook and Amazon.

Still, TikTok's U.S. General Manager Vanessa Pappas posted a video Saturday saying the platform didn't intend to disappear from the states. As tensions with China have grown, so have the suspicions of TikTok harvesting user data.

Due to deteriorating relations between the two nations, India has already banned TikTok as a form of retaliation.

Social media services, including Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc's YouTube, have seen their sales growth continue during the pandemic as users spend more time entertaining themselves online - particularly with video - and advertisers follow them there.

"TikTok U.S. user data is stored in the U.S., with strict controls on employee access".

Although deal-making is going on, TikTok has still struck a tone within the public.

The talks between Microsoft and TikTok, however, are not seen as "dead", although WSJ sources said the companies will seek "clarity" from the White House on "whether [Trump] is planning a separate action that would make it hard for TikTok to operate in the US".

"Hundreds of millions of people come to TikTok for entertainment and connection, including our community of creators and artists who are building livelihoods from the platform", TikTok said in its statement.

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