The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is continuing its U.S. agricultural takeover, buying hundreds of thousands of arable acres across the nation. The purchase of U.S. land is part of the CCP’s food security initiative, posing a significant threat to food and national security for the American public. Republicans appear willing to confront the risk by introducing amendments to H.R. 4356 and 2022 Agricultural Appropriations bill to limit land ownership and tax incentives for foreign investors.
At the beginning of 2020, Chinese investors had purchased upwards of 192,000 acres of American agricultural land. The value of the land is roughly $1.9 billion, which is an exponential increase in ownership over the ten years prior. Exact numbers on the land owned by China and Chinese companies are almost impossible to track, as the USDA’s data on farmland ownership is two-years out of date.
One large purchase that was tracked was made by a Chinese billionaire named Sun Guangxin and his company GH America Energy LLC, a subsidiary of China’s Guanghui Energy Company. Sun spent $110 million purchasing 140,000 acres in a Texas county near the Mexico border and Laughlin Air Force Base.
The land was set aside for the owner to build a wind-farm to feed into Texas’ electricity grid. Known as Blue Hills Wind development, local ranchers, politicians, and the US Military were quick to note the proximity of the development as a serious risk for multiple threats from hostile actors.
The wind-farm development was only 70 miles from Laughlin, raising concerns of potential efforts to spy or “otherwise interfere with US flight training.” Military outlets further noted that the power supply to the Air Force base could be vulnerable should the development go ahead.
Sun is not alone in the takeover of American land by Chinese individuals and businesses. In 2017, ChemChina, a Chinese state-owned enterprise, acquired Syngenta for $43 billion. While mainstream news media argue that the takeover was a bad deal for China, it offers significant long-term leverage over global and domestic food production.
Syngenta is the world’s largest crop protection maker and third-largest seed supplier. The now CCP-backed company operates in 16 different states, invests in agricultural research and development every year, and employs more than 4,000 Americans in 41 states, according to Newsweek.
Despite America suffering supply chain shortages, leaving shelves bare, the Biden’s Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack continues to build strong ties with the CCP. Vilsack’s efforts in support of China came after reports surfaced of China’s land purchases posing a significant threat to American national security.
“The current trend in the U.S. is leading us toward the creation of a Chinese-owned agricultural land monopoly,” warned Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-Wash.) last July.