Mnuchin: U.S. to review Oracle's proposal of being TikTok's 'trusted tech partner' this week
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Monday that the Trump administration will review a proposal received over the weekend from Oracle Corp to make short video app TikTok a U.S.-headquartered company this week.
It is notable that the plan Secretary Mnuchin talked about is Oracle as a "trusted technology partner" to TikTok, a role similar to China's Guizhou-Cloud Big Data Company to Apple Inc - a plan of the latter for data compliance in China.
Based on information released so far, the deal does not involve the sale of TikTok's U.S. operations as pushed by President Donald Trump, nor does it involve TikTok's core technology transfer, such as algorithms.
"We have a lot of confidence in both Microsoft and Oracle, they've chosen Oracle, we'll be reviewing it with their technical teams and our technical teams to see if they can make the representations" to keep data on American phones safe, Mnuchin told CNBC television.
Mnuchin said that September 20 is the final deadline for the deal. Two investigations into TikTok will be carried out: one is a review conducted by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), and the other is a national security review based on Trump's executive order earlier.
He added that the U.S. Treasury Department will review relevant plans with the CFIUS committee and make recommendations to the U.S. President.
Additionally, Mnuchin said that the Oracle deal includes a suggestion to create TikTok Global as a new company, continuing to use the United States as its headquarters and creating 20,000 jobs for the country.
Oracle confirms Mnuchin's statement that it is part of the proposal submitted by ByteDance to the Treasury Department over the weekend, in which Oracle will serve as the trusted technology provider.
Oracle has important ties to Trump's administration. Former Oracle co-CEO Safra Catz was a member of Trump's transition team, and his successor Larry Ellison hosted a fundraising event for Trump's election campaign at one of his California homes earlier this year, according to CNBC.
ByteDance Ltd., the parent company of TikTok, declined to comment on the deal by the time of writing.
Earlier, sources told CGTN that ByteDance will not sell TikTok's U.S. operations to Microsoft or Oracle, nor will the company give the source code to any U.S. buyers.
ByteDance has declined to sell TikTok U.S. operations to Microsoft Corp.
"ByteDance let us know today they would not be selling TikTok's U.S. operations to Microsoft. We are confident our proposal would have been good for TikTok's users, while protecting national security interests," Microsoft said in a statement.