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Nova Daly Comments on Coordinated Strategy to Acquire Critical U.S. Technology

Inside US-China Trade
January 9, 2013

Nova J. Daly, a public policy consultant in Wiley Rein’s International Trade Practice, was quoted by Inside US-China Trade in a January 8 article about efforts by foreign entities to acquire U.S. companies involved with critical technologies.

A recent report from the U.S. Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) found, for the first time, that foreign governments or companies are likely engaged in a coordinated strategy to acquire critical U.S. technology research, development and/or production expertise.

The public version of the report does not identify which governments or companies may be involved in the effort. CFIUS, comprised of the heads of multiple federal agencies and chaired by the secretary of the U.S. Treasury Department, reviews foreign acquisitions of U.S. companies that raise national security issues.

Mr. Daly—a former Treasury Deputy Assistant Secretary for CFIUS—said future transactions involving entities found to be engaged in the strategy to acquire critical U.S. technologies will probably face increased scrutiny and mitigation, if not be outright blocked, as a result of the report’s finding.

But the finding may be “less nefarious” than it seems, given that companies might simply be seeking to benefit commercially from such technologies, Mr. Daly told Inside US-China Trade.