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Hollings: Block Westinghouse Sale

November 21, 1997

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) _ U.S. Sen. Ernest Hollings wants the White House to block Westinghouse Electric Corp.’s sale of its $2.2 billion-a-year gas turbine business to Siemens AG of Germany.

Hollings, a South Carolina Democrat, said the technology was developed with $232 million in taxpayer subsidies.

In a letter to Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin, Hollings said he fears the sale could threaten national security and economic welfare.

Hollings, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Commerce Committee, believes the sale should be stopped if U.S. technology cannot be safeguarded, spokesman Maury Lane said.

Siemens has agreed to buy the non-nuclear Westinghouse Power Generation unit, based in Orlando, Fla., for $1.5 billion. The unit makes steam and combustion turbine engines and had worldwide revenues of $2.2 billion in 1996.

Westinghouse also plans to sell its nuclear power generation business, Energy Systems.

The Pittsburgh-based company announced last week it would sell all its industrial businesses and become a single broadcast company, CBS Corp., by 1998.

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