06:55 GMT25 June 2021
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    Obama issued an executive order prohibiting a German subsidiary of China's Fujian Grand Chip Investment Fund to buy US part of the technology firm Aixtron.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – President Barack Obama issued an executive order barring China's Fujian Grand Chip Investment Fund from buying the US arm of German microchip manufacturer Aixtron, the Department of the Treasury announced in a release.

    "The President issued an order prohibiting the acquisition of the US business of Aixtron SE (Aixtron) by Grand Chip Investment GmbH (Grand Chip) and certain of its direct and indirect shareholders," Friday’s release stated.

    The executive order requires Grand Chip Investment to abandon its acquisition offer within 30 days.

    The Treasury Department explained that Obama issued the order under the Defense Production Act, a section of which authorizes a US president “to suspend or prohibit certain acquisitions of US businesses by foreign persons where he finds that there is credible evidence that the foreign interest exercising control might take action that threatens to impair national security," according to the release.

    Grand Chip Investment is partly owned by China’s government, along with individual investors from China, the Treasury Department said.

    The decision followed an interagency review by the Treasury-led Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which according to the statement found that the deal’s national-security risk “relates, among other things, to the military applications of the overall technical body of knowledge and experience of HYPERLINK "" Aixtron, a producer and innovator of semiconductor manufacturing equipment and technology, and the contribution of HYPERLINK "" Aixtron's U.S. business to that body of knowledge and experience."

    Friday’s order was only the second time Obama has expressly banned a foreign acquisition. In 2012, he cited national security in blocking a privately owned Chinese company from building wind turbines near a US Navy site in the state of Oregon. HYPERLINK ""

    HYPERLINK "" Aixtron's US subsidiary, HYPERLINK "" AixtronInc., employs about 100 people at a chip production facility in California's Silicon Valley.

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