Foreign Affairs Committee publishes report on Newport Wafer Fab
5 April 2022
Today, the Foreign Affairs Committee publishes a follow-up report on the acquisition of Newport Wafer Fab.
- Read the report [HTML]
- Download the report [PDF]
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The report follows up on the review of the acquisition that the Prime Minister said he commissioned and concludes that, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, the assumption is that the National Security Adviser’s review has not been started.
Newport Wafer Fab is one of the country’s largest manufacturers of semiconductors. By the Government’s own admission, semiconductors are critical to the UK’s national security and wider global interests. The takeover of Newport Wafer Fab by Nexperia, a company with links to the Chinese Communist Party, represents the sale of one of the UK’s prized assets to a strategic competitor and potentially compromises national security.
The Committee calls on the Government to clarify:
- the circumstances in which the National Security Adviser is engaged in reviews under the National Security and Investment Act or Enterprise Acts;
- the reasons why the Prime Minister asked the National Security Adviser to undertake a review of Newport Wafer Fab;
- why the National Security Adviser did not undertake such a review;
The Committee urges the Government to provide an update on the nature of the continued monitoring by the Investment Security Unit.
Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Tom Tugendhat MP, said:
“For over a year, the Committee has voiced its concern over the takeover of semiconductor manufacturer Newport Wafer Fab. The National Security and Investment Act has been in place for over three months yet we’ve seen no evidence of its use.
“Semiconductors are essential to every aspect of modern life and Newport Wafer Fab is one of the country’s leading manufacturers. Their takeover by Nexperia left many wondering why we are, seemingly, handing over critical security infrastructure to overseas companies with well-documented links to the Chinese state.
“The long-term security of our nation relies not just on our Armed Forces but on the resilience of our economy and that means ensuring our future stability is never sacrificed for the sake of short-term advancement.
“The Prime Minister’s assurances that work is underway are welcome. However, so few details have been provided to the Committee, that we are left with the unfortunate conclusion that no review has taken place.
“Today, the Committee is calling on the Government to clarify the reasons why the Prime Minister requested a review in Newport Wafer Fab and why this review has not begun. The Government has the tools, it just needs to use them.”
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