Skip to content Skip to Search
Skip navigation

UK’s new media law threatens UAE’s Telegraph bid

The UK government will pass a law to block takeovers of UK newspapers by entities linked to foreign governments Reuters/Belinda Jiao
The UK government will look to pass a law to block takeovers of UK newspapers by entities linked to foreign governments

A likely decision by the UK to ban foreign governments from owning British newspapers and news magazines is being seen as a setback for a UAE-backed investment company’s bid to buy the Telegraph newspaper titles.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay announced the ban on Wednesday, saying a new law will “rule out newspaper and periodical news magazine mergers involving ownership, influence or control by foreign states”.

The London government will bring forward an amendment to the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Bill – which has its third reading next week – to block such deals, he said.

The move comes as RedBird IMI, which is backed by the UAE government, seeks to take control of the Daily and Sunday Telegraph newspaper titles, as well as the Spectator current affairs magazine, after paying off the debts of its previous owner. The Spectator and the Telegraph titles have traditionally backed the governing Conservative Party.

A spokesperson for RedBird IMI told the BBC it was “extremely disappointed by today’s development” but “remain committed” to investing in global media.

The company has invested in six ventures across the UK and the US.

“We believe the UK’s media environment was worthy of further investment,” the spokesperson said.

Other bidders for the newspapers include Sir Paul Marshall, a hedge fund tycoon who owns GB News, DMGT, the owners of Daily Mail, another newspaper, and Rupert Murdoch’s News UK.

Latest articles

Waste To Energy Biogas plant with solar, battery station and E-car charging station

African renewables are ripe for investment, says Irena

Africa accounted for less than 1 percent of the new renewable energy sources added globally last year, and a conference in Abu Dhabi this week called on wealthy investors to help the continent achieve its targets. Amani Abu Zeid, commissioner for infrastructure and energy of the African Union Commission, told the International Renewable Energy Agency […]

Saudi Arabia Ronnie O'Sullivan snooker

Ronnie O’Sullivan to be Saudi snooker ambassador

Saudi Arabia has signed a deal with the world’s top snooker player, Ronnie O’Sullivan, for him to act as an “ambassador” for the sport in Saudi Arabia.  It was announced alongside news that Saudi Arabia has become an official sponsor of the World Snooker Championship that begins this weekend in Sheffield, UK. Under the three-year […]

UAE Costa Rica Cepa

Costa Rica added to UAE economic partners

The UAE has signed a comprehensive economic partnership agreement with Costa Rica, the latest in a string of trade deals around the world over the past two years. It is the first time the South American country has signed an agreement with a Middle Eastern country. The agreement will improve trade flows between the two […]

A man wades through a flooded street in Dubai. Some areas of the UAE received more than a year's worth of rain in one day Video length: 03:08

UAE president orders review after flooding

The UAE’s president, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has ordered an urgent review of the country’s infrastructure after historic levels of rainfall brought the Gulf state to a standstill, with some areas seeing more than a year’s worth of rain in one day. The president has contacted authorities “to quickly work on studying the […]