Canada set to ramp up protectionism against China in critical minerals amid domination by Asian superpower in key metals for clean energy transition – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – June 15, 2022)

Canada is set to take a far more protectionist trade stance against China, as it teams up with the United States and other Western countries in a concerted effort to secure supplies of critical minerals that are key to a lower carbon future.

Since the early 2000s, China has directed its state-owned companies to invest abroad to secure long-term supplies of critical minerals and it has invested billions in Canada as part of that program.

For the most part, Ottawa has taken a laissez-faire approach, allowing Chinese acquisitions of Canadian critical minerals companies, permitting Chinese companies to take large stakes in critical minerals mines, and allowing Chinese companies to hoover up offtake agreements that allow them to control the metals produced by Canadian companies.

But, Jonathan Wilkinson, federal Natural Resources Minister, signalled in an interview that Ottawa is getting ready to crack down on the deluge of Chinese investments into Canadian critical minerals.

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