FDI: Hot relationships between the US, EU, and UK

Webinar organised by Concurrences, in partnership with Cleary Gottlieb, with Laura Black (Director, Office of Investment Security, Policy and International Relations, CFIUS, U.S. Department of Treasury), Damien Levie (Head of "Tech & Security, FDI Screening" Unit, DG TRADE, European Commission), Jacqui Ward (Director, National Security & International, UK Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy), Francesco Iodice (Senior Attorney, Cleary Gottlieb), John Messent (Senior Attorney, Cleary Gottlieb) and Chase D. Kaniecki (Counsel, Cleary Gottlieb).

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Chatham House rule applies to this webinar. As such, no video, podcast or transcript will be uploaded.

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Chase D. Kaniecki moderated the webinar. After an online poll, the answers showed that 55% of the audience have been through an FDI review regime before.

Damien Levie first gave a general overview of the framework applicable to EU companies with regard to the review of foreign investments. In 2017, when the European Commission tabled a legislative proposal to regulate inward foreign investments, some Member States had already introduced a system for screening foreign investments in their legislation. Furthermore, it is possible to observe an increase in foreign investments into the EU from non-OECD countries. Thus, a more effective system is needed to deal with certain issues that are not covered by EU legislation. As mentioned earlier, several Member States, such as France, the DE, and Italy, have already introduced a system of screening of foreign investments, but they do not examine the impact of transactions on their security that are screened outside their borders. One reason for this was that the national authorities did not have a regular system in place to carry out such a cooperative review. Foreign investment is considered as an investment of any kind establishing or maintaining lasting and direct links to carry on economic activity in a Member State. For example, this definition excludes portfolio investments because there are not in direct link to carry out an economic activity. This proposed regulation lists several factors that may be considered when dealing with foreign investment. These include whether the target is involved in critical infrastructure, has developed, or has access to critical technologies, and has critical inputs.

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  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Washington)
  • DG TRADE (Brussels)
  • Department for Business, Energy and lndustrial Strategy (BEIS) (London)
  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Rome)
  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
  • U.S. Department of the Treasury