Britain’s craze for privatisation of industries such as rail, nuclear and utilities has been moving country’s important assets to foreign nations.
German state-owned train firm Deutsche Bahn’s bid for Britain’s bus & train operator Arriva is the latest case that shows that important British assets are being nationalised by foreign countries.
French firm EDF owns nuclear power group British Energy, while the Dutch state railway has a stake in British network. Recently, German state telecoms firm Deutsche Telekom acquired Britain’s T-Mobile and Deutsche Post has been delivering letters in the country.
Foreign governments also own some of the Britain’s sovereign wealth funds. They own considerable shares in Manchester City football club, Barclays Bank and P&O's ports.
Britain’s open door policy has already been criticized by a number of experts. The issue of foreign takeovers came to the centre stage after the acquisition of the British chocolate maker Cadbury by American food giant Kraft.
The government has plans to tighten takeover rules. The Labour and the Liberal Democrats said that short-term investors should be barred from voting so that firms cannot be purchased and sold at the behest of hedge funds.