Foreign Business Inside the PRC

The Qualcomm’s acquisition of NXP Semiconductors is supposedly in jeopardy as the People’s Republic of China threatens approval of the acquisition in its prosecution of its long-term trade fight with the US.

But wait—Qualcomm is an American company, and NXP is a Dutch company.  Why does the PRC even have a say in this?

[The PRC] is the last of nine markets where Qualcomm and NXP need approval from competition authorities….

There’s a perfectly straightforward way around this.  The two could stop doing business in the PRC, which is not a business-friendly nation, anyway, what with the nation’s demands that foreign companies give up their technology to domestic “partners” and that they install backdoors into their core softwares so the PRC government can go in and poke around at whim.

Certainly, there would be large initial costs from walking away from such a large market, and there would be market share reduction in the middle term from ceding that market to competitors.  But what would be the costs, really?  Less anticompetitive restrictions on the combined company’s operations, less government sanctioned—even demanded—theft of proprietary and intellectual property, saddling the PRC albatross to those competitors anxious to fill the “gap.”

And real gains from quitting the PRC market: more efficiencies from better focus on the other eight markets, and a better ability to keep and expand the combined company’s technological edge over its competitors by not having to give up that edge to the PRC.

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