The United States appears poised to heighten scrutiny of Chinese investment in Silicon Valley to better shield sensitive technologies seen as vital to US national security, current and former US officials told Reuters. Of particular concern is China’s interest in fields such as artificial intelligence and machine learning. The worry is that cutting-edge technologies developed in the United States could be used by China to bolster its military capabilities and perhaps even push it ahead in strategic industries. The US government is now looking to strengthen the role of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), the inter-agency committee that reviews foreign acquisitions of US companies on national security grounds. An unreleased Pentagon report, viewed by Reuters, warns that China is skirting US oversight and gaining access to sensitive technology through transactions that currently don’t trigger CFIUS review. Such deals include joint ventures, minority stakes and early-stage investments in start-ups.
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