Tester’s Amendment to Protect American Farmland from Foreign Entities Will Get A Key Vote on Addition to National Defense Bill

Senator’s amendment could be added to the National Defense Authorization Act next week

In his continued effort to defend America’s food security and national security, U.S. Senator Jon Tester announced he has secured a key vote next week on his amendment to prevent future purchases of American agricultural land by foreign adversaries, including China, Russia, North Korea and Iran. If agreed to, Tester’s amendment would be added to the must-pass annual national defense bill, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). 

“As a third-generation farmer, I know that food security is national security,” said Tester. “Allowing our foreign adversaries like China to invest in American ag land and agribusinesses threatens American businesses and puts our food security and national security at risk. Being able to review and prohibit future purchases of farmland by our foreign adversaries is a critical step toward making sure we aren’t handing over valuable American assets to those who want to replace us as the world’s leading military and economic power. I’m proud to have secured a vote on this amendment, and look forward to seeing it passed into law as part of the national defense bill.” 

As the only working dirt farmer in the U.S. Senate, Tester has led the charge to combat Chinese aggression and prevent foreign adversaries from purchasing American farmland. Tester has introduced two bipartisan bills — the Protecting America’s Agricultural Land from Foreign Harm Act and the Promoting Agriculture Safeguards and Security (PASS) Act — to prohibit America’s foreign adversaries including China, Iran, North Korea, and Russia from purchasing or leasing U.S. farmland.

CFIUS is an interagency body comprised of nine officials, two ex officio members, and Presidential appointees that assists the President in reviewing the national security aspects of foreign direct investment in the United States. CFIUS’s members include: Departments of the Treasury (Chair), Justice, Homeland Security, Commerce, Defense, State, and Energy, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, and the Office of Science and Technology Policy.

Tester’s amendment would enable CFIUS to review all significant agriculture-related foreign investments using expert data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and it will empower CFIUS to prohibit future purchases of farmland by our foreign adversaries.