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EU Wants Power To Block China's Tech Buying 203

Posted by timothy
from the communist-block dept.
itwbennett writes "In an interview with German daily paper Handelsblatt, the EU's industry commissioner, Antonio Tajani, said he wants the power to block China from buying up European tech companies. Tajani envisions an authority along the same lines as the United States' Committee on Foreign Investment and would determine 'if the acquisition (of a company) with European know-how by a private or public foreign company represented a danger or not.'"
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EU Wants Power To Block China's Tech Buying

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  • by WindBourne (631190) on Friday December 31, 2010 @11:11PM (#34727618) Journal
    to the dollar, I say block it. The fact is, that while China belongs to WTO and IMF, they obey NONE of it. It is time for the west to say enough, is enough. China needs to obey the treaties and other legal obligations that they have signed. That includes:
    1. allowing their money to float freely(WTO, IMF, and Clinton accord).
    2. Quit dumping (WTO, and Clinton Accord).
    3. Quit subsidizing all of their state businesses (WTO, IMF, and Clinton Accord).
    4. drop trade barriers(WTO, and Clinton Accord).
    5. Turn on their pollution control mechanisms (Japanese treaty).
    6. Allow rare earth exports (WTO).
    7. quit buying up companies and the telling them to either move the company to China or directing that 100% of the goods be transfered to China (WTO).

    And that is just for starters.
    The fact is, that the west needs to say enough is enough. I support free trade, but not when it is one sided.

    • I googled "Clinton accord" and got nothing like what you describe. Could you please direct me to the proper references?

      Thanks in advance.

    • You support free trade, but not when the other "side" is "winning"? Are you crazy? Do you even know what "free trade" is? It's a ticket for transnational companies to do what the hell they like, override local laws and generally be a government unto themselves. Now, what is one-sided?

    • by Rogerborg (306625)

      What do you imagine would happen if the rest of the world tried to get tough with China, and the Chinese regime locked down the ports, told their businesses that they'd underwrite their wage bills in order to keep the peasants working, and just started backing up all the exports - or for that matter, just diverted them straight from the factories that make them to the factories that recycle them?

      I'd give it a week before the rest of the planet blinked and caved in completely. We need them China a lot mor

      • by rtb61 (674572)

        It's almost like you like in a world where, Taiwan, Japan, Indonesia, Korea and India don't exist.

        China manufacturing is being driven by western corporate greed, the desire to cripple the middle class, and the willingness of the China leadership to ruthlessly exploit the Chinese people.

        Fair trade will happen (import adjustments to ensure product competitiveness is based upon fair equitable costs including, minimum wages, pollution controls, labour conditions, product safety, taxation base).

        China's pr

  • by elucido (870205) * on Saturday January 01, 2011 @12:08AM (#34727962)

    And the only thing they'll accomplish is they'll force China to use it's covert/secret agents to buy European tech companies. If China wants to buy a company nobody and nothing can stop it. They'll have their European shell company set up with their puppet CEO who will covertly buy the company in the name of China. Then years later China will overtly take control.

    It's called a hostile takeover.

    • And that is what has been going on in America. Part of several bill by W allowed companies to hide their investors. If the rest of the west does not want wholesale destruction of their nations like has happened to America, then they need to require all investment companies to disclose who the investors in them are.
      • It's been going on since the 80s at least as far as I've been alive. Japanese companies were the big threat back then and were using sneak techniques to conduct a covert hostile takeover.

        It's what we should expect from any nation state. They want to steal American technology, business, control of industry, etc. They also want to steal jobs.

        • by unity100 (970058)
          yeeeeeeees. they are after americans. yees. they are after american riches and whatnot yees.
      • by gman003 (1693318) on Saturday January 01, 2011 @12:52AM (#34728166)
        Uh, "wholesale destruction" isn't what's happening to the US, and China can take little credit for the decline that is happening. At worst, the US is having a slump, caused by incompetent leadership and short-sighted financial policy, combined with a media that doesn't "report" the news so much as it "spins" the news.
        • by nospam007 (722110)

          The following are 17 national debt statistics which prove that we have sold our children and our grandchildren into perpetual debt slavery....

          #1 As of December 28th, the U.S. national debt was $13,877,230,355,933.00.

          #2 If the federal government began right at this moment to repay the U.S. national debt at a rate of one dollar per second, it would take over 440,000 years to pay off the national debt.

          #3 If the federal government began repaying the national debt at a rate of $10 million dollars a day it would

    • They don't have to be covert or secret. The housing bubble in Australia has been driven to a large extent by Chinese buyers. The property is actually owned by Chinese born Australian citizens but the money is coming from China.

      • by dbIII (701233)
        I know a few Chinese born Australian citizens who would really love it if this conspiracy theory is true, but instead they have to save to hit a moving target just like the rest of us.
        The reality is pretty well the same as the US housing bubble and a whole lot of others in history. About the only twist we've got is a bit of artificial political manipulation because the press and others assume that sales of houses are equal to a measure of the economy - thus leading to the assumption that a lot of activity
        • by MichaelSmith (789609) on Saturday January 01, 2011 @12:49AM (#34728146) Homepage Journal

          This comes from my wife's relatives and friends. They are primarily Malaysian born Chinese with Australian PR or citizenship. And yes they have a lot of trouble saving to buy. They see a lot of mainland Chinese born people buying property purely to invest. Additionally my wife works as an architect and she knows of mainland Chinese businesses which are actively investing in the Australian property market. They do projects typically between five and 10 million AUD. Usually high density unit development. She looked at working for them but they weren't paying enough to justify the risk.

          • by dbIII (701233)
            Yes, real anecdotes but of little consequence to a larger system. It's just like a few real investors from Sydney buying land in Queensland but it's not enough to drive the bubble.
            It's a weaker link than a conspiracy theory of saying that the Chinese run the Liberal Party via Andrew 'Twiggy' Forrest and just as unlikely to make a difference in the long run. The mining sector is where there is a lot more investment than the trivial percentage of the housing market. Radio Rich Gay Redneck talkback subjects
          • I see. So any foreigner coming to invest 10 million in your country is a conspiracy. That's like, what? 0.001% of your country's GDP?
          • by drinkypoo (153816)

            Right now a hot market for the small property investor is foreclosures in the USA, which are incredibly numerous. Of course, you have to get one that's not going to be contested, or you could end up in an eternal legal battle. Why would you want to live in a country where everything'll kill ya? They're going just as fascist as the rest of the world.

            • Yes the strong aussie dollar does lead to ideas like that but I reckon dealing with red tape would be a problem.

              • by drinkypoo (153816)

                The USA just wants your money so we let anyone not on THE LIST of people who we claim are terrorists or from a member of THE OTHER LIST of countries we are mad at economically since we sure don't give a tenth of a shit about human rights come in and buy property. The real issue to me is that the economy continues to decline and there is every sign that the government is trying to make it do this as rapidly as possible, and that means more and more hungry, homeless people wandering around and potentially squ

    • "Nobody and nothing can stop it".

      Rubbish. Laws can be made that stop this kind of thing and China must abide by Western laws when doing business in the West (just as Western businesses must operate by Chinese laws in China). Stop the unfounded sensationalism please. Here the EU is clearly creating regulatory laws as is their sovereign right - and China is subject to them whether they like it or not (if they are caught stealing tech the full force of such laws is used against them). I applaud the EU for prot

    • by sethstorm (512897)

      Not if it that means they are declared traitors, along with complete seizure of assets. The EU and the US have plenty of weapons to put China back in its place, behind the world.

  • Under what power? (Score:2, Informative)

    by SlappyBastard (961143)

    The EU, as currently conceived, just flat-out doesn't have the power to enforce laws in individual countries. Look at the recent abortion ruling by the EU against Ireland. Ireland's response amounted to "And . . . ?"

    The first time the EU tries to make this stick, they're going to have to go to court against every member nation the company in question operates in.

    The Europeans need to face facts: they're not remotely as committed to the ideal of unity in practice as their speeches would suggest. Look at t

    • by Peeteriz (821290)

      It does take at least a generation to get mental acceptance of the population for a move from nation-governments to a federal one. It took quite long for USA, and it's still state rights often become an issue; and it will take still quite some time in Europe.

    • by metrix007 (200091)
      What about things like the 3 strikes law, where the EU was fining countries for not implementing it?
    • by arivanov (12034)

      You are missing the point.

      In the case of Ireland EU was going against the political powers of Ireland and the public opinion there.

      In the case of introducing rules on "EU interest" EU will be going along with the public opinion and politics in more than half of the EU countries. The only one to oppose that will probably be Britain and I would not be so sure about that one either.

  • by Bob_Who (926234) <Bob@who.CHEETAHnet minus cat> on Saturday January 01, 2011 @01:47AM (#34728380) Homepage Journal
    Economics. Its all a lot more civilized than violence.

    But lets stop trying to win petty economic battles in lost wars... Democracies always seem to resort to trade restrictions when confronted by another majority. Its no fun anymore when you are suddenly out numbered by your own ideology.

    Human beings are prone to human nature in any and all cultural landscapes. I read that in a fortune cookie (an American custom).

    Personally, I like Chinese Food, and I look forward to prosperity and success for all nationalities no matter what economic policies are negotiated, or implemented. Just make sure not to squander life or liberty if wealth belongs to someone else... Other people are people, too.
  • by DNS-and-BIND (461968) on Saturday January 01, 2011 @02:11AM (#34728468) Homepage
    Let's do China one better, and buy its tech companies and loot their assets! What's that you say? China has laws on the books prohibiting the sale or investment of companies which may damage its national interest? Entire industries are restricted [chinadaily.com.cn]? And there are parts of China's economy totally prohibited from any foreign investment whatsoever [xing.com]? Surely Europe and America can trust this country and not apply any reciprocal policies that fuck over China as much as China fucks over foreign firms.
    • by rolfwind (528248)

      Let's do China one better, and buy its tech companies and loot their assets!

      America has been doing this for decades with European companies.

      Your head is in the sand if you think this is new with China.

      • by AHuxley (892839)
        China has learned from the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opium_Wars [wikipedia.org]
        Never good to be addicted to anything from the outside again.
        Or let real cash flow out.
        • Never good to be addicted to anything from the outside again.

          Like, say, cheap electronics?

          You might laugh now, but consider that inflation is calculated by a "goods basket" that includes a lot of things, and 'for some odd reason', recently a lot of electronics moved into that basket. Why? Because electronics are getting cheaper and cheaper, and hence keep inflation down. You don't want to know what inflation would actually be like if you remove cheap China crap and just rely on, say, food, transportation and local services. Hint: One digit is not enough to represent

    • by 7-Vodka (195504)
      Don't worry. All of china's strategies will backfire on them, we should not reciprocate because it will only make things worse for us.

      What people don't realize is that when the government tries to meddle with the free market, the results are always deleterious [youtube.com].

      It's all about the unintended *and invisible* consequences and the solutions being worse than the problems. It's like price fixing and fiat currencies.

  • If someone would directly or indirectly cause a prohibited country to benefit whether by hostile takeover, scuttling of the company, or any other means of takeover, then anyone involved in such a takeover can be pursued for treason in the member country.

    If China wants to be despotic, it's going to have a lot of blood on its hands that it cant wash off. The only way you deal with China's despots is with hardball.

    • If someone would directly or indirectly cause a prohibited country to benefit whether by hostile takeover, scuttling of the company, or any other means of takeover, then anyone involved in such a takeover can be pursued for treason as defined in the member country, and can be pursued anywhere in the world.

    • You want to go to war with a country that can muster about 700 MILLION people if need be? Where 20 MILLION reach an age where they can carry a rifle sensibly per year?

      FYI, The US can (provided they get a draft past the population, and given that we won't have too many dropouts due to lard) get about 150 Million and 4 Million annually.

      And we're not talking about a country whose weapons resemble those of Iraq, ok? You're facing a military that is quite well equipped and a workforce that they can press into 18

  • Remember all those people that said that Africans are just poor and starving because they're lazy bums who could have it just as good as us if they just got off their collective ass and started working?

    I wonder if the same people think that something like this is better.

  • If yes, would it not be equal if China wants its companies in EU?

That does not compute.

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