Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party minority government has ordered Chinese state-run enterprises to divest from a trio of Canadian mining companies only days after Xi Jinping took a third term as leader of the communist regime.
The Globe and Mail characterized the Nov. 2 decision as the Trudeau government “doubl[ing] down on its efforts to get tougher on China, after the Federal government faced an avalanche of criticism earlier in the year for allowing too much investment from the Asian superpower into the domestic resource sector.”
The Liberal Party’s minority, which survives only with the blessing of a formally acknowledged alliance with Jagmeet Singh’s far-left New Democrat Party, faces the looming threat of losing power altogether after Pierre Poilievre, a sharp and charismatic populist, was elected leader of the Conservative Party in September.
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The Globe stated that the move, which impacted mining companies Power Metals Corp., Lithium Chile Inc., and Ultra Lithium Inc., was predicated on chatter issued by the government on Oct. 28 that going forward, it would only allow state-owned firms to transact in Canadian mineral companies on an “exceptional basis.”
“The new rules applied not just to outright takeovers of Canadian companies, but investments of any size, including smaller noncontrolling stakes across every facet of the resource industry, from exploration and development to mining and refining,” the article stated.
A Canadian Press wire release on the divestment order notes that the order was issued by Innovation Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne, a man who himself has had spurious conflicts of interest with Chinese entities.
Champagne, who was shuffled to the position from Minister of Foreign Affairs shortly after it was revealed his office had invited officers of the Chinese regime’s People’s Liberation Army to Canadian soil for winter survival training, also came under fire during his reign after it came to light he owed the People’s Bank of China $1.2 million in connection with purchases of property in London.
“Critical minerals and metals, such as lithium, cadmium, nickel and cobalt, are essential components of everything from wind turbines and electric cars to laptops, solar panels and rechargeable batteries,” the article stated. “China is the dominant player in critical minerals refining and processing, as well as the manufacturing supply chain of battery cell components.”
The hardening of Canada’s position is a departure from the Trudeau administration’s widely criticized habit of allowing the CCP’s firms to take root in Canadian companies despite national security and human rights concerns issued on both sides of the political spectrum.
Perhaps the most egregious example of the ruling Liberals’ position was demonstrated in joint efforts to release Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou from house arrest shortly after Joe Biden took office in the United States, completely undermining a Trump-era state department initiative to counter the Party by weakening what arguably amounts to the regime’s biggest tech position.
Trudeau’s administration has also been soft on Beijing’s human rights abuses.
In February of last year, when the entire Canadian parliament voted 266-0 to condemn the Communist Party’s persecution of Uyghur Muslims in the Xinjiang region as genocide, the Liberal Party and its cabinet ministers unilaterally abstained from the vote.
The Prime Minister is most decried for footage of comments he made during a 2013 election-time fundraiser among a group of Ontario socialites where he stated, “There’s a level of admiration I actually have for China because their basic dictatorship is allowing them to actually turn their economy around on a dime.”