Chinese Diplomats Are The Driving Force Of Tech Acquisitions, Report Finds

( A recent report from the Center for Security and Emerging Technology (CSET) found that Chinese science and technology diplomats acted as the CCP’s brokers – seeking out and identifying overseas collaborations, investments or acquisition opportunities, the purpose of which was to acquire foreign technology on behalf of the Communist Chinese Party.

According to this “China’s Foreign Technology Wish List” report released in May by CSET, the objective of these tech diplomats was part of the CCP’s larger “going out” strategy.

The “Going Out” strategy, originally proposed by the CCP in 1999, encourages Chinese companies to invest overseas. According to the CSET report, the CCP-sponsored approaches the diplomats undertook included monitoring cutting-edge technology among foreign entities, academia, and from both government labs and individual researchers. Once these were identified, the diplomats organized “matchmaking activities” between Chinese companies and these foreign entities – which included helping the Chinese companies sign investment, licensing and production agreements with foreign tech companies as well as hiring foreign personnel to work in China.

“China’s Foreign Technology Wish List” examined 642 reports on such “matchmaking activities” involving three hundred foreign companies, universities, research institutions and individuals that were documented by Chinese embassies and consulates worldwide.

In examining these reports, CSET found 190 cases involving biotech, another 171 involving artificial intelligence and machine learning, as well as some involving integrated circuit design or the manufacture of semiconductor equipment.

Of the foreign entities targeted by these tech and science diplomats, most involved Russia (122) and the US (77). The UK (62) and Japan (57) were also among those countries targeted.

Nearly 90% of the cases from the US the CSET cites were referred to Chinese businesses from the Chinese consulate in Houston, Texas.

It was this Chinese consulate that was closed in July 2020 after US officials alleged it was part of a larger CCP effort to use diplomatic facilities around the US to conduct espionage operations.

This report reinforces the concern that the CCP is deliberately co-mingling business ventures with illegal activities like intellectual property theft and espionage – something the Communist Chinese have repeatedly denied.