MPs Demand New Laws to Stop State-Owned Companies Investing in UK Infrastructure

By Gary Cutlack on at

A group of Conservative MPs are asking the prime minister to bring forward legislation to limit the involvement of state-owned companies in our national infrastructure, in yet another thinly-veiled attempt to get Huawei out of our future mobile phone networks.

This would strengthen a renewed crackdown on Huawei that's said to be on the way, with the government thought to be planning to ask for a full "phase out" of the Chinese tech giant's equipment from our mobile network -- rather than the current capped and limited involvement arrangement we have today. The FT quotes a supposed cabinet minister on the matter, who said: "MPs and the public want action on China. Takeovers are something we have to act on."

Tom Tugendhat from the foreign affairs select committee went further and put his name to a quote in which he expressed worries about Chinese money coming in to buy distressed UK businesses amid the coronavirus collapse in valuations, saying: "If we're not careful, much of the intellectual property we will need for our long-term innovation and prosperity could disappear to Shanghai or Shenzhen." [FT via Reddit]