EU foreign investment scrutiny has blind spots, say auditors

The European Union's scrutiny of foreign investment suffers from blind spots because some EU members do not carry out screening and those that do have widely different approaches, the European Court of Auditors (ECA) said on Wednesday.

The EU has since 2020 obliged EU countries with national screening in place to exchange information on potential security or public order risks, with the European Commission empowered to issue opinions if it sees a risk from an investment in critical sectors such as ports, nuclear plants or semiconductor plants.

The law does not name China, but its proponents' complaints about investments by state-owned enterprises, such as COSCO Shipping's in Greek port Piraeus, and technology transfers were clear references to Beijing.

The Commission has said it will propose revisions before the end of the year, part of a package of measures to...

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