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Germany bolsters corporate defenses against Chinese 'predators'

European officials worry coronavirus-weakened companies could be acquisition targets

German politicians have been on guard against Chinese acquisitions of local companies with advanced technologies since Midea Group’s 4.5 billion euro buyout of robot producer Kuka in 2017.   © Reuters

HAMBURG, Germany -- Germany and other governments are bolstering corporate defenses to address worries that coronavirus-weakened companies could be easy prey for opportunistic Chinese buyers.

"We will avoid a sellout of German economic and industrial concerns," German Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Peter Altmaier said last week as he announced plans for a fund to take stakes in or buy out local companies needing a lifeline.

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