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BERLIN — Germany is seeking tighter control over foreign investment in European companies in an increasingly protectionist stance on China’s appetite for overseas acquisitions. Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel on Monday reopened a review of the takeover of Aixtron, which supplies equipment to the semiconductor industry, by China’s Grand Chip Investment. That follows calls by Gabriel, who is also Chancellor Angela Merkel’s deputy, for EU measures to give national governments more powers to block or impose conditions on shareholdings of non-EU companies. While Merkel has not publicly backed her vice-chancellor’s push, Gabriel’s proposal reflects a mounting backlash in her government to unfettered Chinese investment in Europe’s biggest economy following the purchase of German robot maker Kuka by China’s Midea Group. Gabriel has found an ally in EU digital economy commissioner, Guenther Oettinger, a Merkel appointee who is a member of her party. "It’s absolutely right to initiate this de...

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