McGuireWoods’ Matthew Hall Analyzes UK’s Foreign Investment Law in Westlaw Today

March 14, 2024

Businesses and private practice lawyers are troubled by the breadth and ambiguity of the United Kingdom’s National Security and Investment Act 2021 (NS&I Act) two years after the law took effect, McGuireWoods London partner Matthew Hall wrote in a March 12, 2024, Westlaw Today article.

The NS&I Act significantly strengthened the UK’s foreign direct investment rules when it came into force in January 2022. Against the background of criticism about how the new law has been applied, the UK government in January 2024 concluded a call for evidence on how the rules can be made more business-friendly while maintaining essential national security protections. The aim is to follow a “small garden, high fence” approach to protect against a small number of deals that could harm national security while leaving most transactions unaffected, Hall wrote.

“The overall result is likely to be that the act will be more workable and targeted and this is welcome,” he wrote. “This would be good for investors in UK businesses and assets and for owners and founders of UK companies and assets which could be targets.”

Hall, an antitrust lawyer and member of McGuireWoods’ Government Investigations & White Collar Litigation Department, has written frequently about the NS&I Act and its implications for investors.