The UK government opened an industry call for consultation in November 2020, regarding the protection of some 17 key industry sectors with regards to foreign investment. Those seventeen areas cover sectors such as robotics, AI, cryptography, civil nuclear, energy, transport and biology amongst others.
Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) cranked upwards of $750 billion in the last 10 years, creating over 660,000 UK jobs. Irregardless of the need for continual inward investment, the UK National Security & Investment (NSI) Bill aims to protect certain transactions which could destabilise key sectors of the economy with regards to protecting national security. The NSI bill is following similar approaches from the other “five eyes” countries such as Australia, Canada and the United States.
Essentially the NSI proposes mandatory notifications to the UK Secretary of State regarding acquisition or changes in significant control of organisations within the seventeen proposed sectors.
The call for consultation is to understand if the definitions and bread and depth of activities within those sectors is sufficient to allow for a functioning investment profile that is both secure yet allows for innovation.
Responses to the consultation process can be done online here.
The full list of sectors includes:
- Advanced Materials
- Advanced Robotics
- Artificial Intelligence
- Civil Nuclear
- Computing Hardware
- Critical Suppliers to Government
- Critical Suppliers to the Emergency Services
- Cryptographic Authentication
- Data Infrastructure
- Engineering Biology
- Military and Dual Use
- Quantum Technologies
- Satellite and Space Technologies