November 02, 2022

U.S. Exploring Whether It Has Authority to Review Musk’s Twitter Deal

Featuring Emily Kilcrease

Source: The Washington Post

Journalists Jeff Stein, Joseph Menn, Faiz Siddiqui

As a U.S. citizen, Musk’s purchase of Twitter is not subject to review. But the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States could investigate the role of the foreign investors in the company and order changes in their involvement, experts on foreign investment review say.

“Twitter is sensitive infrastructure for the national discussion, and it has foreign co-investors who clearly do not abide by democratic norms and values,” said Emily Kilcrease, who served as CFIUS coordinator at the Commerce Department. “The fact that they are looking at that aspect of the overall Twitter deal makes a lot of sense to me.”

Musk also has extensive ties to China through Tesla, the publicly traded electric vehicle company he runs, but that indirect leverage would not typically be a core focus of a national security investment review, experts said.

Kilcrease said the early review would be complicated, potentially lasting months, because the investors are in a murky middle ground as significant participants with some special rights. To justify a full CFIUS review, the foreign co-investors would need to have more than inside information about Twitter’s strategy and financial health, she said.

Read the full story and more from The Washington Post.

Authors

  • Emily Kilcrease

    Senior Fellow and Director, Energy, Economics and Security Program

    Emily Kilcrease is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Energy, Economics, and Security Program at CNAS. Her research focuses on the U.S.-China economic relationship; alignment...