Blocking foreign investors from hurting Ohio jobs

By Sen. Sherrod Brown - Contributing columnist

Foreign investments should lead to good-paying jobs in Chillicothe and Chardon — not huge payouts for the Chinese government.

That’s why I worked with my Republican Colleague, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), to introduce the U.S. Foreign Investments Review Act. It’s simple — before we do business with a foreign entity, let’s make sure it will create jobs and grow the U.S. economy.

We heard reports this summer that a Chinese company, Great Wall Motors, is looking into buying Fiat Chrysler. But right now, no mechanism allows us to evaluate these investments for their long-term economic benefits or consequences for American workers and American businesses.

Sen. Grassley and I want to change that, so that every decision on a foreign investment is made with American businesses and workers in mind.

Our bill requires the Commerce Department to review and evaluate large foreign investments to ensure they’re in America’s interests and will create American jobs.

We’ve seen foreign investments in the U.S. that have raised serious concerns — including worries that these foreign competitors are pursuing investments to undermine American industries and give their own companies an unfair advantage. Some of these companies are even owned or controlled by foreign governments.

Any time a foreign competitor talks about coming in and buying a major American company, we need to take a serious look at what that sale would mean for local American workers, and for their entire community.

Our bill would require the Commerce Department to complete reviews of these investments in an efficient, transparent way that allows for a public comment period, and requires all decisions be made public. It would also give Congress the authority to request reviews of investments, regardless of their size, if they think the investment should be subject to additional scrutiny.

Foreign investors determined to put American companies out of business should not be able to invest in our economy at the expense of American workers.

By Sen. Sherrod Brown

Contributing columnist

The writer is a U.S. senator from Ohio.

The writer is a U.S. senator from Ohio.