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India issues a third wave of bans on Chinese apps

India's Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology issued a ban on 43 apps from China-based developers, including four apps from Alibaba.

AliExpress was the highest-profile app targeted this go-around, and Alipay Cashier and Alibaba Workbench were also included on this list. Many of the other 43 apps are lesser-known dating services and mobile games.

While there weren't as many high-profile apps targeted by this latest ban, it nonetheless represents a continuation of India's efforts to disentangle its tech sector from China. In June, Indian and Chinese troops fought over a disputed border, leaving 21 Indian soldiers dead. Later that month, India banned 59 apps, including TikTok, UC Browser and WeChat. Then in September, India banned another 118 apps, including Tencent's popular mobile game PUBG. In all three instances, the ministry said the bans were motivated by concerns over national sovereignty and data security.

Chinese tech companies had been leading investors in India's digital economy prior to the border conflict. Seven of India's 10 highest-valued tech companies were backed by strategic investors from China, according to the Financial Times. Since the rise in India-China tensions, however, U.S. companies have upped their investment in India's tech sector. Most notably, Reliance Jio — India's top wireless carrier by subscribers — raised $20.2 billion in a four-month span from an investor group that included Google, Facebook, Intel, Silver Lake and KKR. Reliance Jio reportedly plans to work with Facebook to launch a WeChat-like super app for India.

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