Shearman And Sterling

CFIUS, US Dept of Treasury building, Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States

May 08, 2023

Treasury Department Proposes Expansion of CFIUS Authority to Block Real Estate Transactions Near Sensitive U.S. Government Installations


Jump to...



On Friday, the Treasury Department’s Office of Investment Security proposed expanding the authority of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) to block real estate transactions involving foreign persons within 100 miles of sensitive military installations. The proposal would add eight new military bases to the list of military installations around which CFIUS, chaired by Treasury, has jurisdiction to review real estate transactions involving foreign persons for national security concerns. The eight new Air Force sites, which primarily relate to sensitive development and training programs, are:

  • Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale, California
  • Dyess Air Force Base in Abilene, Texas
  • Ellsworth Air Force Base in Box Elder, South Dakota
  • Grand Forks Air Force Base in Grand Forks, North Dakota
  • Iowa National Guard Joint Force Headquarters in Des Moines, Iowa
  • Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas
  • Laughlin Air Force Base in Del Rio, Texas
  • Luke Air Force Base in Glendale, Arizona

Treasury’s proposal comes roughly five months after CFIUS concluded it had no jurisdiction to review what became a controversial plan by Fufeng Group Limited, a Chinese company, to purchase land for a corn milling plant about 12 miles from Grand Forks Air Force Base. CFIUS did not publicly explain its reasoning for its decision. The Committee may have concluded it lacked jurisdiction because the CFIUS regulations provide an exception for “greenfield” investments such as Fufeng’s. And the Grand Forks Air Force Base was not included on the list of sensitive military sites published by CFIUS, so the Committee may have concluded it could not apply its real estate-related authority to the transaction. The addition of eight Air Force bases in Treasury’s proposal (including Grand Forks Air Force Base) should help address this second gap in CFIUS jurisdiction. Written public comments on the proposal are due by June 5, 2023 and can be made at Proposed Rule: Provisions Pertaining to Certain Transactions by Foreign Persons Involving Real Estate in the United States. Treasury will review the comments and either withdraw the proposed rule, issue a revised proposed rule, or issue notice of a final rule that could take effect as soon as 30 days after notice.

CFIUS filings for U.S. real estate transactions involving foreign persons are currently voluntary, unlike the mandatory CFIUS filing regime for some types of foreign investment in U.S. businesses with access to U.S. critical technology, critical infrastructure, or sensitive personal data. But CFIUS has the authority to initiate its own review of real estate transactions involving foreign persons, including post-closing, and may impose mitigation measures or require that the transaction be unwound. Foreign persons engaging in U.S. real estate transactions involving certain kinds of property, including property near sensitive U.S. government sites such as military installations, should ensure CFIUS considerations are a part of their due diligence process and carefully weigh whether to make a voluntary filing with CFIUS.

Authors and Contributors

Michael J. Walsh, Jr.



+1 202 508 8130

+1 202 508 8130

Washington DC

Matthew Modell



+1 202 508 8045

+1 202 508 8045

Washington DC