Jonathan Wakely

Jonathan Wakely

Jonathan Wakely practices at the intersection of national security and the private sector, advising clients on a range of significant international trade, cross-border investment, national security, supply chain security, and public policy matters.

Mr. Wakely has been recognized by Chambers USA for his leading expertise in securing national security-related regulatory approvals for foreign investments. He regularly represents clients before the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), the Committee for the Assessment of Foreign Participation in the United States Telecommunications Services Sector (better known as “Team Telecom”), and the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency (DCSA) in proceedings related to the mitigation of foreign ownership, control, or influence (FOCI). He was deeply involved on behalf of clients in the development of the Foreign Investment Review Modernization Act of 2018 (“FIRRMA”), which reformed CFIUS’s authorities, and its implementing regulations.

Mr. Wakely has advised on transactions with an aggregate value in excess of $250 billion across virtually all sectors, including semiconductors, telecommunications, financial services, software, IT services, energy, and real estate. His recent representations include successfully defending Qualcomm against the attempted hostile takeover by Broadcom, securing approval for the acquisition of Genworth Financial by China Oceanwide, and representing Ford Motor Company in connection with a $2.6 billion investment by Volkswagen in Ford’s autonomous driving subsidiary, Argo AI. He has negotiated and advised companies on compliance with many of the most significant, complex, and sensitive national security agreements of the past decade.

Mr. Wakely also regularly advises clients on public policy and government relations matters involving international trade, cross-border investment, and national security. He has represented trade associations, Fortune 100 companies, and sovereign states before Congress and the executive branch, including by designing and executing government relations campaigns to achieve policy, regulatory, and legislative goals.

Mr. Wakely is an adjunct professor at the Georgetown University Law Center, where he teaches a course on national security and the private sector. He has also published extensively on matters related to the regulation of foreign investment; his articles have appeared in the Harvard National Security Journal, The International Lawyer, and the Global Trade and Customs Journal. Before joining Covington, he served as a political analyst with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), where he provided strategic analysis to the President and other senior policymakers.

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Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance

By any measure Ethiopia is experiencing impressive economic growth.  According to IMF data, GDP grew 8.7 percent in 2012, the country’s weakest year since 2009.  In 2010, GDP grew a blistering 12.6 percent, higher than all but a handful of countries worldwide.  Going forward, the IMF estimates Ethiopia’s economy will grow at 8.0 to 8.5 … Continue Reading

Electrify Africa Act Affirms Broad U.S. Support for Investment in Power Sector

Last week the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Electrify Africa Act of 2014, confirming the existence of a broad, bi-partisan consensus in favor of supporting U.S. direct investment in Africa’s energy sector.  The bill, which now heads to the Senate, seeks to establish a “comprehensive United States Government policy to encourage the efforts of … Continue Reading

Senate Resolution Addresses Growing Security Risk in Gulf of Guinea

Earlier this year, the Senate passed a resolution endorsing and supporting efforts by the Obama Administration to improve maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea.  The resolution could not be more timely, as pirate attacks off the coast of West Africa have increased in the first first months of 2014, prompting the International Chamber of Commerce’s International Maritime … Continue Reading
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