LONDON – The UK has tightened control over incoming foreign acquisitions in its first major update to its review process in two decades, responding to concerns that sensitive technology could leak into China and other countries.
The national security and investment law, which came into effect on Thursday, requires advance notice for foreign acquisitions in 17 areas, including artificial intelligence, quantum technologies, communications, defense and energy. The government can block any business that poses a national security risk.
Companies that fail to notify the government in advance will be fined 5% of their worldwide sales or £ 10 million ($ 13.8 million), whichever is greater. The government is expected to evaluate potential deals within 30 working days.
The move comes amid growing concerns about national security impact technologies moving overseas, particularly into China.
For years Britain experienced what some referred to as the “golden era” of relations with China …