Virgin Galactic Officials Remain Optimistic on Aabar Deal

Richard Branson after his first flight aboard WhiteKnightTwo at the Oshkosh airshow.
Richard Branson after his first flight aboard WhiteKnightTwo at the Oshkosh airshow.

Questions on Security Mar Foreign Investments
The New York Times

Executives at Virgin Galactic, by comparison, say they remain confident they can clear up government concerns about the proposed sale of 32 percent of their venture to Aabar Investments of Abu Dhabi, which is controlled by the government there.

National security officials participating in the review have questioned whether sensitive rocket and missile launching and fabrication technology might be shared with foreign governments as a result of the transaction, according to executives involved in the deal who asked not to be identified because details of the transaction are confidential.

The administration also sought to make sure that the deal would not violate an international agreement called the Missile Technology Control Regime that is intended to prevent the global spread of missile-based weapons delivery systems.

As a result, the companies involved have agreed to resubmit their application for government approval, restarting the 90-day clock the government has to accept or reject the proposal.

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