(RepublicanInformer.com)- China continues to buy up American farms, prompting questions among GOP lawmakers about what the Chinese Communist Party intends to get from its U.S. investment — a spending spree surging by about 2,500% over the previous decade.
3% of agricultural land in the U.S. is foreign-owned, according to a December 2020 report by the Department of Agriculture. China hawks are concerned about the national security implications of China’s expanding land portfolio.
At least one governor in America is taking a stance.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has threatened to tighten down on “undue influence from rogue regimes” like China in reaction to Chinese corporations purportedly buying up farms.
DeSantis was questioned about a recent survey by the National Association of Realtors that revealed Chinese real estate investors spent $6.1 billion on American real estate over a 12-month period that ended in March – more than any other group of foreigners.
Florida accounted for 24% of all overseas real estate acquisitions in the US, while California placed second (11%).
DeSantis said that commercial interests with apparent ties to the Chinese Communist Party shouldn’t be permitted to buy American real estate.
He thinks the problem is that these corporations have ties to the CCP, and it’s not always clear what they do — but he believes it’s a significant concern.
Businessmen from the mainland, Taiwan, and Hong Kong have aggressively bought existing residences in Florida and California.
In 2019, the US Department of Agriculture said Chinese-linked firms held 192,000 acres of farmland valued at more than $1.9 billion.
Florida had the highest volume of real estate acquisitions. It was the 14th consecutive year that overseas investors showed the most interest in Florida properties.
According to the NAR, DeSantis plans to enact legislation that limits how much Chinese corporations may invest in Florida pension funds.
“We don’t have much, but we want to cut relationships, so we’re not subsidizing our number-one adversary,” the Republican governor added.
GOP senators Marco Rubio of Florida and Kevin Kramer of North Dakota addressed a letter to the Biden administration this month demanding that officials evaluate a Chinese company’s purchase of North Dakota acreage near a critical military station.
Fufeng Group, a Shandong, China-based company specializing in taste enhancers and sugar alternatives, recently purchased 300 acres of farmland near Grand Forks, North Dakota, a rural location 90 minutes from the Canadian border.
The farmland’s proximity to a US Air Force facility that stores secret drone technology has legislators on Capitol Hill worried about Beijing espionage.
According to CNBC, three North Dakotans sold the land to Fufeng Group for $2.6 million.