Media Mention

Bobby Chesney: The Commerce Department Reveals the Scope of the TikTok and WeChat Sanctions

September 18, 2020

Note: This piece was originally published in Lawfare and was written by Checks & Balances member Bobby Chesney.

The Commerce Department has announced what kinds of consumer transactions will be covered by sanctions under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) that go into effect against TikTok and WeChat on Sept. 20. Here’s what you need to know.

First, if you are new to the details of the TikTok and WeChat sanctions stories, you can catch up with these prior posts: here and here and here and here. For now, the important thing to understand is this: When President Trump imposed sanctions on TikTok and WeChat back in August, he specified that they would take effect 45 days later (that is, this coming Sunday, Sept. 20) but also that the secretary of commerce would, by then, issue a clarifying directive spelling out exactly what interactions with these companies would be forbidden. Well, now we know (more or less) the answer.

This morning, the Commerce Department released a statement detailing which “transactions” are to be forbidden. It’s good news for TikTok, bad for WeChat.

Continue reading at Lawfare.

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