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China, Signaling Thaw With U.S. Over Trade, Approves Toshiba Microchip Deal

In a prelude to an easing of trade tensions between Washington and Beijing, Chinese officials ended a monthslong delay by approving Toshiba’s sale of a majority stake in its lucrative microchip unit to an American-led group.

A lack of approval by Chinese regulators had held up the deal in what was widely seen as a signal from Beijing about how it might punish American businesses if the Trump administration acted on threats to impose tariffs on $150 billion in Chinese-made goods.

In a statement on Thursday, Toshiba said it had received “all required antitrust approvals” for the deal with a consortium led by the United States investment firm Bain Capital. Bain confirmed in its own statement that Chinese authorities had approved the deal.

Chinese officials could not be reached for comment late Thursday, and the country’s official media and websites were silent on the matter. The reasons for the approval after the lengthy delay were not immediately clear.

CARLOS TEJADA and MICHAEL J. de la MERCED

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