The investment in Hinkley Point nuclear power station by Chinese investors was re-investigated last summer by none other than Theresa May herself and given the all clear, as far as she was concerned.
In DevDosh Ltd opinion, it seems that there is change on the horizon as the government of the United Kingdom is proposing to stiffen the screening process of overseas investment due to worry that this stream of investment into sensitive areas could have national security implications.
These concerns were expressed in the Conservative Parties election manifesto back in May when the prime minister said she would make sure that any foreign companies owning and controlling “important infrastructure” would not come at the expense of British security.
Although the Conservatives did not fare as well as they may have liked (pardon the pun) in the recent election and as a result other ideas contained in the May manifesto have fell by the wayside, DevDosh Ltd sees the plan for a more stringent takeover regime is one that they will move forward with.
This is in direct contradiction to how the party viewed Chinese investment under David Cameron who pulled out all the stops to encourage more overseas investment from Beijing, including roping in Her Majesty the Queen to entertain the Chinese president back in 2015.
There has been a vast amount of investment from the Chinese into UK property and infrastructure, one of the biggest UK property deals being the purchase of the Leadenall Building known as the “Cheesegrater”.
The United Kingdom is not the only soveirignity to have such concerns, a week ago, the German government broadend its powers to block the takeover of German companies amid growing concerns in Berlin at the scale of Chinese investment in the country’s high-tech sector.
In February, Germany, France and Italy presented the European Commission, the EU’s executive arm, with a common position on screening investments from abroad, a first step towards an EU-wide mechanism similar to Washington’s powerful Council of Foreign Investment in the US, or Cfius.
The government stated in its manifesto:
“We have already strengthened ministerial scrutiny and control in respect of civil nuclear power and will take a similarly robust approach across a limited range of other sectors, such as telecoms, defence and energy,” it stated.
As it stands any overseas investment is screened by the Competition and Markets Authority, with the attention on competition not on national security.
For DevDosh Ltd, Britain is one of the most open of the advanced western economies to foreign investment in sensitive sectors such as telecoms and civil nuclear power.
Since 2005 China has invested $44bn into the UK, of which $11.15bn was invested just last year.
For more detail regarding the property investment, please visit DevDosh Ltd today.