Canada promises to toughen up scrutiny of foreign investment, citing national security fears – by Steve Chase and Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – December 8, 2022)

The Canadian government is proposing to toughen scrutiny of foreign takeovers, citing national security concerns, just weeks after its new Indo-Pacific policy identified China as an “increasingly disruptive” power.

“The world has vastly changed in the last few years,” Innovation Minister François-Philippe Champagne said as he unveiled a package of changes to the Investment Canada Act that he said represented the most significant update in more than a decade. “That’s why we must be prepared to face the challenges that could endanger our economic security and national security.”

China is not mentioned by name – and the government insists the rules apply equally to all countries – but the changes are geared toward stopping the transfer of intellectual property or trade secrets to foreign countries.

“Geopolitics has changed and we need to change as well. I think what we’re doing today is sending a signal,” Mr. Champagne said. “It sends a signal across town that we need to be more vigilant.”

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