Friday, September 21, 2007

Buying The United States

Photo: Dubai Towers
On the heels of this week's QUESTION OF THE WEEK comes this September 21, 2007 article in the Washington Post.

Excerpt (emphases mine):
NEW YORK, Sept. 20 -- Middle Eastern governments announced a series of billion-dollar deals Thursday that would give them stakes in financial institutions at the heart of Western capitalism, raising concerns in Washington about sensitive foreign investments.

Under a complex three-way deal, the stock exchange owned by the government of Dubai would acquire a 19.9 percent stake in the Nasdaq Stock Market, becoming the first government in the Middle East to own a substantial interest in a U.S. exchange.

Separately, Carlyle Group of the District said it was selling a 7.5 percent share of its general ownership to an investment group owned by the government of Abu Dhabi, which like Dubai is part of the oil-rich United Arab Emirates. The Qatar Investment Authority, a government investment fund, said it bought a 20 percent stake in the London Stock Exchange.


Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), who heads the congressional Joint Economic Committee, called on Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. to investigate the deal.

"At this early stage this deal gives me pause," Schumer said in a statement. "While I am and have been a big proponent of foreign investment in the United States, we must still be careful of the kinds of investments made in our critical infrastructure, financial exchanges, utilities, and other areas that are vital to the operation and security of our country."

Schumer said the Dubai exchange "is majority owned and controlled by the government of Dubai, which has previously been cited as a nexus of terror financing, money laundering, and a potential crossroads for shipping and trading for Iran in their quest for nuclear materials and technology."...
On Wednesday, September 19, 2007, the print edition of the Washington Post contained an eight-page, packed-with-color-photos advertising section entitled "Dubai: Where the Future Begins." The section is designed to appeal to tourists and investors. According to the article on page 6, "The entrepreneurs [are] helping to make the emirate the most valuable piece of land on the planet." Maybe such is the future. If so, it doesn't bode well for the United States. The OPEC nations of the Middle East are awash in big bucks as the price of oil has now topped $83 per barrel.

Labels: , ,

Bookmark and Share
posted by Always On Watch @ 9/21/2007 09:02:00 AM