Parliament Debates National Security and Investment Bill

The Government could be given new powers to scrutinise and intervene in M&A transactions deemed to raise national security concerns, under a draft Bill currently being debated in the House of Lords.

The National Security and Investment Bill would introduce an independent screening regime in the UK where a transaction involving a change of control of a UK entity or asset may have the effect of jeopardising UK national security interests.

The rules would require investors and parties to a broad range of transactions to determine if the regime applies and to make any required mandatory notification.

The new law would require a purchaser who is proposing to acquire a “qualifying entity” in one or more of 17 specified “sensitive sectors” to inform the Secretary of State of the transaction. The regime would apply equally to foreign investment as well as UK buyers and investors.

Notifiable transactions cannot be completed unless clearance is given, or the transaction would be void.

Transactions deemed not to be notifiable or within a sensitive sector may still be submitted for clearance on a voluntary basis.

The draft legislation also details new powers for the Secretary of State to review, impose conditions or block transactions which may pose a risk to the national security of the UK.

The Bill is currently being examined by Parliament. If passed, it is expected to take effect later this year. However, under the draft provisions, the law would apply retroactively to all transactions since 12 November 2020 which are caught by the new rules.

Parliament Debates National Security and Investment Bill 2
Lawble is a leading legal resource aimed at supporting people and businesses alike by providing reliable information, legal resources and links to leading and reputable legal service providers.

More from author

Related posts

Legal Buyers Guide

Choosing a Legal Adviser

Legal advisers are there to help you understand your rights, and to use the law to solve your problem. They should do this in...

Paying for Legal Advice

One of key factors when buying legal advice will be the cost. Legal services can be complex and the final cost can depend on things...

Legal Advice for Individuals

Whatever your situation, it helps to understand the legal issue you're facing and what kind of advice you might need. Spending time understanding what you...

Want to stay up to date with the latest business legal news?

We would love to hear from you! Please fill in your details and we will stay in touch. It's that simple!