Donald Trump has blocked microchip maker Broadcom's $140bn (£100bn) takeover of US telecoms company Qualcomm, citing national security concerns.
The US President's order abruptly halted what would have been the technology's biggest deal over fears the merger would give China the upper hand due to the fact that Broadcom is based in Singapore. Ever since taking office, Trump has been sensitive to China's dominance in numerous markets and has adopted a highly competitive stance against its economic rival.
Trump's intervention came after the US government delayed a Qualcomm meeting in which shareholders were due to vote on whether to replace six of its directors with new individuals put forward by Broadcom.
The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (Cfius), a branch of the US Treasury which can intervene on national security grounds, ordered the 30-day delay to "afford Cfius the ability to investigate fully Broadcom’s proposed acquisition of Qualcomm".
Qualcomm, which has made chips for products such as Apple iPhones, has emerged as one of the biggest competitors to China’s Huawei Technologies Co in the sector, making Qualcomm a prized asset.
At the time, Broadcom slammed Qualcomm for involving Cfius, saying: "Qualcomm secretly filed a voluntary request with Cfius to initiate an investigation, resulting in a delay of Qualcomm's annual meeting 48 hours before it was to take place," the company said in a statement.
Earlier in the week it was revealed that Intel was eyeing a bid Broadcom to entice it away from its pursuit of Qualcomm.