A recent internal investigation has revealed that the Biden administration is failing to effectively monitor the foreign ownership of agricultural land in the United States. It has come to light that the second-largest foreign landowner is a member of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
According to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), the Department of Agriculture (USDA) has not consistently shared timely data on foreign investments in farmland, as mandated by the 1978 Agricultural Foreign Investment Disclosure Act (AFIDA). This act requires the USDA to maintain a database of information on foreign land investors, which is then included in an annual report to Congress.
The GAO’s report, which was published on Thursday, highlights the USDA’s non-compliance with AFIDA and raises concerns about the lack of transparency regarding foreign ownership of U.S. farmland.
“The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) does not share timely data on foreign investments in agricultural land collected under the Agricultural Foreign Investment Disclosure Act of 1978, as amended (AFIDA),” the GAO report states, adding that this failure has created “potential national security risks.”
It is impossible for the investigative agency to report accurately due to the USDA’s “flawed” information-tracking process, according to the agency: “reliable information to Congress or the public about where and how much U.S. agricultural land is held by foreign persons.”
The study was conducted by the GAO in response to the USDA’s estimation that foreign investment in American agricultural land had expanded to around 40 million acres in 2021.
“These investments may have consequences for U.S. national security,” the report warned. “For example, there may be foreign ownership of U.S. agricultural land close to sensitive military installations.”
The release of that report occurred shortly after the astonishing disclosure that a Chinese billionaire managed to remain undetected by the government for almost ten years, while also becoming the second-largest foreign holder of U.S. farmland.
According to Land Report, “Tianqiao Chen has been staring us straight in the face for almost a decade.”
In 2015, the member of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) purchased approximately 200,000 acres of land in Oregon from Fidelity National Financial Ventures for a total of $85 million, equivalent to $430 per acre.