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Dutch government to protect telecom companies against foreign takeovers

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Staff Writer | April 20, 2018
The Dutch government wants to protect important companies in the Dutch telecom sector against foreign takeovers.
Mona Keijzer
Europe   State Secretary Mona Keijzer is sending a proposal
State Secretary Mona Keijzer of Economic Affairs is sending a legislative proposal to the Council of State on Thursday which states that such takeovers first need to be approved by the Ministry, ANP reports.

The Ministry hopes that this bill will prevent companies of "vital importance" easily falling into foreign hands. The bill concerns "providers of telephony, internet or data centers", the Ministry said in a statement, according to the news wire.

If possible takeovers are first reported to the Ministry, the Ministry can put a stop to them "if national security or public order can be jeopardized".

If a takeover is done without the Ministry's permission, the government will have the authority to reverse it under this bill.

"The Cabinet wants to prevent unreliable, non-transparent or criminal companies from getting their hands on our national security", Keijzer said. "That's why I'm protecting this vital sector and implementing a obligation to report [planned takeovers]."

The Council of State will assess and give advice on the legislative proposal. The government hopes to submit it to the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, in the autumn of this year.