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MARTIN MARIETTA, LOCKHEED CEOs URGE BAN ON FOREIGN GOVERNMENT OWNERSHIP, CONTROL OF U.S. DEFENSE SUPPLIERS

 MARTIN MARIETTA, LOCKHEED CEOs URGE BAN ON FOREIGN GOVERNMENT
 OWNERSHIP, CONTROL OF U.S. DEFENSE SUPPLIERS
 WASHINGTON, April 30 /PRNewswire/ -- The chairmen and chief executive officers of the Lockheed (NYSE: LK) and Martin Marietta (NYSE: ML) corporations today urged Congress to adopt a policy prohibiting foreign government ownership of U.S. defense companies.
 Testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee's Subcommittee on Defense Industry and Technology, Norman R. Augustine of Martin Marietta and Daniel M. Tellep of Lockheed voiced opposition to foreign government nationalization of the U.S. defense industry. The subcommittee hearing was devoted to the proposed sale of the LTV Corporation's Missile Division to Thomson-CSF of France, which is owned, controlled and subsidized by that country's government.
 "It has long been our nation's policy to reject the nationalization of the U.S. defense industry through U.S. government ownership. Why then should we permit foreign governments to acquire these same crucial U.S. defense assets?" Augustine and Tellep said in joint testimony.
 Foreign government ownership of sensitive U.S. assets would be "ominous for maintaining a viable prime contractor and subcontractor base in critical defense areas, for expanding U.S.-based research and development and ultimately for achieving our goal of developing and maintaining high-quality jobs and technical know-how in the U.S.," they continued.
 LTV, the 17th-largest U.S. defense contractor, is sole-source supplier for advanced technology, national security programs such as the Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS), the Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) and Extended Range Interceptor (ERINT). ATACMS is capable of delivering both nuclear and chemical warheads. LTV also is involved in several classified defense programs.
 "We are not protectionists. We believe in free trade and strongly support the free enterprise system, which exactly is why we oppose this type of foreign government intervention in the U.S. marketplace," said Augustine and Tellep.
 "Nevertheless, there are situations when the assumptions underlying our open investment policy are violated. When, as here, the acquirer is foreign government owned and controlled, and when the acquirer seeks to purchase resources and technologies critical to our nation's defense, we believe the acquisition is not in our nation's interest and should not be permitted," the chief executives added.
 Two additional congressional committees have scheduled hearings on the proposed Thomson/LTV transaction, and more than 75 members of Congress have signed letters of concern regarding the sale. Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, already has said he will sponsor legislation to prevent the U.S. Department of Defense from awarding contracts to foreign government-owned defense firms.
 -0- 4/30/92
 /CONTACT: Charles P. Manor of Martin Marietta, 301-897-6258/
 (LK ML) CO: Lockheed Corporation; Martin Marietta Corporation ST: District of Columbia IN: ARO SU:


TW -- DC025 -- 5122 04/30/92 16:22 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 30, 1992
Words:466
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