Trump slams China's tech scene, says it doesn't have the capability of 'the geniuses in Silicon Valley that walk around in undershirts'

President Donald Trump defended the US’s tech dominance on Monday and reasoned that China was no match for the “geniuses in Silicon Valley that walk around in undershirts.”

Trump called in to CNBC’s “Squawk Box” Monday morning to discuss a variety of issues, from tariffs in China and Mexico to big tech’s regulation in the European Union. But Trump waved off any concerns that China would beat out the US in developing a next-generation 5G wireless network.

“China, as great as they are – and they are great – they don’t have nearly the capability of our geniuses in Silicon Valley that walk around in undershirts, and they’re worth $US2 billion apiece,”Trump told CNBC. “They don’t have nearly the genius that these people have, and they practically admit it.”

Read more:
The tech cold war: Everything that’s happened in the new China-US tech conflict involving Google, Huawei, Apple, and Trump

The tech cold war between US and China has maintained a fever pitch since the US barred American tech firms from working with Chinese companies like Huawei over concerns about state-sponsored spying and national security. Huawei told the US that restricting its business would only harm US interests and cause the country to lag behind in deploying the 5G network.

Most recently, Russia’s largest network provider signed a deal with Huawei to build 5G internet in 2019 and 2020.

Nonetheless, Trump said Monday that the US would be “leading very shortly” in the race to implement 5G.

The two countries have also duked it out by implementing heavy tariffs on each other’s goods since March 2018. Last month, the US raised tariffs on Chinese goods to 25%. Trump told CNBC on Monday that the hefty tariffs had successfully “decimated” China to help the US get the upper hand.

Listen to the full interview Trump gave to CNBC here.

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