Bush to review Dubai business deal

A US government panel has recommended to the president a Dubai-owned company's proposed $1.24 billion takeover of Doncasters, the British group with plants in the US that supply spare parts to the military.

    Dubai abandoned the ports deal after a security furor

    The recommendation, from the inter-agency Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS), "has gone to the president for review," a White House spokesman said on Thursday.


    A decision by President Bush is due in 15 days and follows a congressional uproar over feared security risks that scuttled another Dubai state-owned company's plan to acquire operations at six major US ports.


    The White House disclosed no details of the recommendation from CFIUS, which weighs security implications of foreign acquisitions of US firms.


    Among Doncasters units is a plant that is the sole supplier of turbine fan parts for US Abrams battle tanks, according to a spokesman for Rep. John Barrow, a Georgia Democrat who represents a district that is home to the plant.


    CFIUS is chaired by the treasury department and includes representatives from the departments of defence, homeland security, state, commerce, Justice, and other agencies.


    Congressional critics have launched a drive to give lawmakers some oversight of the review process. The Treasury had no comment on the Doncasters' review.


    By law, the president has the authority to block foreign acquisitions and mergers involving US-based firms if they are deemed to present credible threats to US national security.


    Dubai International Capital said in a statement on Thursday that the parties expected to close the acquisition following "successful completion of all reviews." The company did not immediately return a phone call seeking further comment.


    Dubai Ports World opted last month to transfer terminal operations at the six US ports in question to a US entity after a bipartisan furor over security fears.


    The administration had approved DP World's $6.85 billion purchase of London-based Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co. in January without the matter having gone to an extended, 45-day, security review. Without the extended review, the matter did not reach Bush as the Doncasters deal has.

    SOURCE: Reuters


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