R&C: What do you consider to be the main CFIUS-related trends and developments over the past 12 to 18 months? To what extent has the Trump administration impacted the stringency of the CFIUS process?

Goodale: During the past 18 months, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) has more stringently analysed proposed acquisitions by foreign entities of US companies involved in industries related to US national security. This heightened stringency has been evidenced by the significant increase in the number of cases that CFIUS has extended from 30-day reviews to subsequent 45-day investigations. Based on data released by CFIUS, it can be discerned that greater scrutiny is likely to be applied in certain cases. Such cases may involve Chinese acquirers, foreign governments, US defence contractors, US target companies in high-tech industries or possessing highly sensitive data, and industries in which there are few US suppliers, among others. Enhanced scrutiny of transactions is expected to continue and could be increased if Congress passes recently introduced legislation to reform and expand CFIUS’ powers that is supported by the Trump administration.

Apr-Jun 2018 Issue

FisherBroyles, LLP