U.S. Security expert on proposed Chinese-owned processing plant in Grand Forks: "It's a very worrisome thing"

(Fargo, ND) -- A U.S. security and supply chain expert is expressing concerns about a proposed corn processing plant for Grand Forks that would be owned by China-based Fufeng Group.

Ross Kennedy, founder of Fortis Analysis and Senior Fellow at Securities Studies Group describes the proposed project as a "very worrisome thing". 

In an interview with WDAY Radio, Kennedy asserted the proximity of the proposed processing plant to the U.S. Air Force in Grand Forks and other sensitive military sites in the region would create a security risk by allowing the Chinese government to potentially use the site as a base of operations to spy on and monitor U.S. military activity in the area.

"Even the people local to Grand Forks may not know how important this base is.  It's not some no-nothing base that has survived all the base closures and realignments over the years.  Grand Forks is home to one of the largest intelligence and surveillance and reconnaissance wings we have anywhere in the world. I can't think of a lot of red-blooded Americans that would be okay with their town being used potentially as an installation to monitor the comings and goings of an air force base," said Kennedy. 

Kenney also asserts that Fufeng Group's founder and chairman Li Xuechun has direct to ties to the CCP, or the Chinese Communist Party. 

"In 2003 he was elected to the Shandong People's Congress which is essentially quote unquote a state legislature which is basically a rubber stamp for the National People's Congress of the Chinese Communist Party," said Kennedy. 

In the interview with WDAY, Kennedy also discussed Governor Doug Burgum's role in trade between North Dakota and China, and asserted how the plant, if given final approval, will play a critical role in China's long-term food security. 

The full audio interview is posted above.  

Original Air Date: 
Monday, February 21, 2022