Tag Archives: china

China is buying U.S. Companies. What secrets do they get?

Summary: Cybersecurity expert Emilio Iasiello discusses China’s acquisition of America’s knowledge, technology, and skills by acquiring America’s companies.

China Business

Chinese Acquisition of U.S. Companies:
Sometimes a Cigar May Just Be a Cigar

By Emilio Iasiello
Posted at Dead Drop (of the LookingGlass Cyber Threat Intelligence Group)
7March 2016. Posted with his gracious permission.

Since 2012, there has been increased interest in Chinese companies purchasing U.S. businesses.  In the recent report published by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS).  According to the report’s findings, CFIUS reviewed 147 transactions in 2014, which was a 52% increase over the number of notified transactions in 2013.  Fifty-two of these cases were subject to follow-up investigations in order to determine if they posed a risk to U.S. national security interests.  Unsurprisingly, for the third consecutive year, China led all foreign countries in filings, with 24 transactions reviewed, an increase from 21 the previous year. Two months into 2016, China shows no signs of slowing down its acquisition requests.

  • State-owned China National Chemical Corporation offered to purchase Swiss pesticide Syngenta AG for $43 billion.  Syngenta maintains chemical facilities in the United States deemed potential terrorist targets by U.S. officials.
  • In late January 2016, China’s Zoomlion Heavy Industry Science and Technology Co., Ltd., made an offer for the U.S. crane manufacturer Terex Corporation.  In addition to being a state-owned enterprise, Zoomlion, a construction machinery manufacturer, has a longstanding relationship with China’s People’s Liberation Army, calling into question if providing a supplier of critical infrastructure equipment to U.S. government agencies poses a risk to U.S. national security.
  • As recently as February, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange announced that it would be sold to a consortium led by the Chongqing Casin Investment Group of China, and
  • Fairchild Semiconductor recently rejected a takeover bid by China Resources Microelectronics and Hua Capital Management out of concern that CFIUS would reject it.

There were notable purchase attempts in 2015 as well. Tsinghua Unisplendour Group, China’s largest state-owned chip design company, proposed to buy a 15 percent stake of Western Digital Corporation, one largest computer hard disk drive manufacturers in the world. The deal ultimately fell through when the Chinese company backed out once CFIUS intended to conduct a second-stage investigation.

The potential acquisition of these companies can certainly be interpreted as being driven by Beijing’s national interests. The targeted companies bear closer inspection as the fields that they represent coincide with the strategic industries outlined in China’s Fifth 12 Year Plan (2011-2015); namely, environmental protection; new generation information technology; biological; high-end equipment and manufacturing; new energy; new materials; and new energy automobile. This raises alarm particularly as some security professionals have intimated that the China’s 12th Five Year Plan provides almost a blueprint for Chinese cyber espionage operations, the intent of which has been the theft of secrets and intellectual property to gain competitive advantage.

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Stratfor: What Kind of Great Power Will China Become?

Summary: How China wields its growing power will help shape the geopolitical world of the 21st century. Here Stratfor looks at China and speculates at what it might become. {1st of 2 posts today.}


What Kind of Power Will China Become?

Stratfor, 3 February 2016

These are grim times for the Chinese economy. In the two years since property markets peaked and subsequently began to slow in most cities across China, it has become abundantly clear that the approach to economic management that sustained double-digit annual growth for two decades has exhausted itself. The unprecedented stock market volatility of the past year, along with signs of spreading unemployment and labor unrest in many regions, are important reminders that the transition to new foundations of national economic growth will in all likelihood be bitter, slow and unnervingly uncertain.

In times like these, it is tempting to embrace visions of irreversible decline — just as it was easy, in the expansive years of consistently high growth, to view China’s rise as straightforward and inevitable. As Stratfor pointed out well before the 2008-09 global financial crisis, which set in motion many of the policies and processes that underlie China’s current woes, the only certainty in the high-growth years was that they would someday end. Their ending, we predicted, would unleash tremendous and potentially destabilizing social pressures long kept at bay by the promise of universal employment and rising material prosperity. At the least, this process would slow China’s political, military and economic rise as the decade ends. At worst, it would send China into a more debilitating and longer-lasting period of crisis and fragmentation.

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Magnus: China’s leaders must choose: political power for them, or economic growth for China

Summary: Today’s post by A-team economist George Magnus discusses China’s economic challenges, especially the clash between its political and economic transitions. These are among the major unknowns affecting the future of China, that other pole of the world economy, {1st of 2 posts today.}

Globe and China Flag

Will, or can China put change before control?

By George Magnus, 29 January 2016
Reposted from his website with his generous permission

One of John McDonnell’s economic advisory team, David Blanchflower, recently wrote in the New Statesman, “The new Labour leaders are not economists and are going to have to learn fast. They will have to accept the realities of capitalism and modern markets, like it or not.” He makes a fine point, and on reading it, I immediately thought that it could equally be made about China.

The leadership is no longer new, and for them the realities of capitalism and markets are not the same: they are prepared to incorporate market mechanisms and go along with western capitalism only to the extent that they, a) do not compromise the interests and primacy of the Chinese Communist Party; b) help the Party further Chinese economic and political power;  c) bolster the competitiveness and efficiency of state institutions. What the leadership does not want is a central role for markets and prices in the determination of the ownership, allocation and distribution of resources.

This much, if you did not know it before, has become evident to global audience in the seemingly parochial world of finance.

On the one hand, China has taken the initiative to set up the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank under the umbrella of what President Xi Jinping has called the One Belt, One Road project, or to you and me, a 21st century Silk Road by land and by sea; and most recently won the IMF’s backing to include the Yuan in the so-called Special Drawing Right, the IMF’s accounting unit. We could also point to other initiatives to encourage greater use of the Yuan in the settlement and invoicing of trade, the denomination of international bonds, and the composition of central bank currency swaps; and to encourage foreign capital to come into Chinese financial markets.

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