Washington (AFP)

The popular TikTok application, threatened with ban in the United States, will be able to continue to be downloaded in the country: Donald Trump gave the green light on Saturday to a draft agreement involving Oracle and Walmart.

"I think it will be a fantastic deal," the Republican president said, before flying off to a campaign rally in North Carolina.

"I gave my approval to the deal. If they make it happen so much the better. If not, that will be fine too."

The company, a subsidiary of a Chinese group, confirmed shortly after preparing a project involving Oracle as a technology partner in the United States and Walmart as a business partner.

The agreement also provides that the two American companies can buy up to 20% of shares in TikTok before a future IPO.

"We are pleased that the proposal by TikTok, Oracle and Walmart resolves the security concerns raised by the US administration and resolves questions regarding the future of TikTok in the United States," a spokesperson told AFP. .

If it materializes, such an outcome could make it possible to extinguish one of the many fires currently smoldering between Washington and Beijing.

It may also allow Americans to continue using this application, which is very popular with young people: "In view of recent positive developments", the Commerce Department has announced that it is postponing the ban on downloading TikTok at least until September 27. in the United States which was to come into force on Sunday.

- Spying -

The tenant of the White House has been claiming for weeks that TikTok, whose parent company is the Chinese company ByteDance, is spying on behalf of Beijing, without having made public any evidence.

In the name of national security, at the beginning of August he issued a decree giving ByteDance until September 20, ie Sunday, to cede TikTok's activities on American soil to a company "made in the USA".

The application, which makes it possible to broadcast short videos often musical or humorous, very popular among young people, has some 100 million users in the United States.

Donald Trump estimated that with the agreement between TikTok, Oracle and Walmart, "security will be 100%" and that companies will use "separate servers".

TikTok clarified that Oracle would be in charge of hosting all US user data and the security of associated computer systems.

The agreement also provides for the hiring of 25,000 people in the United States and the maintenance of the headquarters of the company in the country.

The companies involved will also make "a donation of around $ 5 billion" for "the education of young Americans," said the American president who had insisted that the government be paid for having authorized the agreement.

Oracle and supermarket giant Walmart did not immediately respond to AFP's requests.

On Friday, the US administration announced that it would prevent the downloading of TikTok in the United States from Sunday, as well as WeChat, an application by Chinese giant Tencent used for messaging, shopping, payments and more. other services, with some 19 million users on American soil.

- Sanctions -

China had reacted strongly by denouncing Saturday "intimidation" of the United States and by establishing a mechanism allowing it to restrict the activities of foreign companies.

List of "untrustworthy entities" - whose names of targeted foreign companies have not been made public - concentrates potential penalties ranging from fines to restriction of activities or entry of equipment and personnel into China .

Its entry into force is seen as a response to a similar list put in place by Washington to exclude Chinese telecoms giant Huawei from the US market and then to attack TikTok and WeChat applications.

Negotiations for the management of TikTok's activities on American soil had been slipping for several weeks.

A first project involving Microsoft and the distribution giant Walmart was rejected by China last weekend, leaving the field open to Oracle.

A US government national security committee has been tasked with reviewing the offer on the table;

Republican lawmakers have warned of greenlighting a deal that would leave the company under Chinese control.

© 2020 AFP