Britain must defend its companies against overseas takeovers, says Tom Tugendhat MP

Britain must defend its companies against overseas takeovers in the aftermath of the crisis caused by the coronavirus outbreak, Conservative MP Tom Tugendhat writes in the Financial Times.

Tugendhat, chair of the House of Commons Foreign Affairs Select Committee, said that "China's state-owned enterprises have been able to draw on state banks to outbid rivals in Europe and America.

“In a downturn, the difference between state-backed credit and the buying power of normal commercial investors will become starker, further strengthening the hand of state-owned enterprises with a voracious appetite to buy rather than build.”

He wrote that while Britain has prided itself on being an open economy with few restrictions on foreign ownership for decades, the basis for that model has been changed by the “rise in state capitalism with deep pockets."

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Last month, Tugendhat said China was trying to exploit the global crisis triggered by the novel coronavirus outbreak by wresting control of companies such as Imagination Technologies and changing the way the internet works.

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