UK to increase powers to block foreign investments


The British government plans to increase its power to block or modify foreign investment in the U.K. on national security grounds under legislation to be introduced Wednesday.

The National Security and Investment Bill would require businesses to notify the government about deals in sensitive industries, including defense, transportation, communications and artificial intelligence. The government will then have 30 days to review the transactions and impose conditions on those deemed to pose a risk to national security.

The legislation, which applies to technology and intellectual property as well corporate takeovers, follows similar moves by the U.S. and Australia amid increasing concern about investment from potentially hostile countries such as China.

“The U.K. remains one of the most attractive investment destinations in the world and we want to keep it that way,” Business Secretary Alok Sharma said in a statement. “But hostile actors should be in no doubt – there is no back door into the U.K.”



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