EU To Legislate To Protect High-Tech Firms From Foreign Takeover

EU regulators are currently drafting rules to protect European firms with “key technologies” from foreign takeovers, EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager has announced in a speech at the Ambrosetti Forum in Cernobbio, Italy, Bloomberg has reported.

Germany put similar rules in place in July, which would allow the government to block foreign acquisitions of cutting-edge technology. 

We’ve heard concerns about foreign, often state-owned, investors taking over European companies that control key technologies...This issue isn’t simple. It needs careful consideration before we decide how to act. We’re working on this issue now, and we plan to put forward concrete proposals in the autumn.

Margrethe Vestager

While the EU’s powerful merger regulators have the final say on whether most big deals would affect competition, European governments can jump in to halt deals that affect key national interests such as defence, energy, financial stability or security.

Vestager said in July that she had “relatively few concerns” about how governments use exemptions and their concern over technology deals was “completely legitimate.” 

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Gary Cartwright

Gary Cartwright

Gary Cartwright is publishing editor of EU Today. 

An experienced journalist and published author, he specialises in environment, energy, and defence.

He also has more than 10 years experience of working as a staff member in the EU institutions, working with political groups and MEPs in various policy areas.

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