Statement – Minister Champagne highlights updated guidelines on national security review of foreign investments

Guidelines provide transparency and clarity for Canadian businesses and foreign investors

OTTAWA, ON, March 24, 2021 /CNW/ – Today, the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, made the following statement regarding updates to the 2016 Guidelines on the National Security Review of Investments, issued under the Investment Canada Act (ICA):

“As we work with businesses to help them recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Canadian companies may look to global capital to help support their growth. Foreign direct investment allows many of Canada’s cutting-edge, intellectual property–intensive firms to scale up and reach global customers. At the same time, as a government, we have a responsibility to ensure such investment does not bring with it national security threats, as some of these Canadian companies possess sensitive personal data or develop and manufacture sensitive technologies that form part of critical supply chains.

“The updated guidelines released today identify areas that could present national security concerns in foreign investment. These include sensitive personal data, certain sensitive technology areas, critical minerals, and investments by state-owned or state-influenced investors. The renewed guidelines will provide additional transparency and clarity for Canadian businesses and foreign investors.

“Today’s announcement follows the April 2020 Policy Statement on Foreign Investment Review and COVID-19, which specified that investments in critical goods and services, particularly in the health sector, would be subject to enhanced scrutiny under the ICA. The April 2020 statement will remain in place until the economy recovers from the effects of the pandemic.

“Our government will continue to take action where necessary to protect national security while remaining open to investment that benefits Canadian jobs and economic prosperity. To that end we will be consulting with relevant stakeholders on additional measures that could further bolster Canada’s economic security.”

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