Will Investment Canada closely examine the risks of China’s takeover of Aecon?

On Wednesday, January 31st, 2018 in Parliament, Question Period

Elizabeth May

Mr. Speaker, in town halls with my community through the break period, I heard, over and over again, the concerns of the takeover of Aecon, proposed to be taken over by a state-owned enterprise of the People’s Republic of China.

British Columbians are particularly concerned because Aecon now holds 30% of the contracts for the generating station at the disastrous Site C projects. We are wondering, will Investment Canada look closely at the extra risks posed due to the Harper era investment treaty that gives China superior rights to Canadian companies if we should want to improve labour protections and environmental protections?

Navdeep Bains – Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague knows full well that our government has been very clear about our desire to be open to trade, people, and investment. We are focused on growth and jobs.

With respect to the Investment Canada Act process, she knows that the Aecon acquisition is going to go through a robust and rigorous process. We evaluate each and every single acquisition on a case-by-case basis. This is a multi-step process.

I want to assure the member that we will do everything we can to make sure that the outcome will benefit Canadians. When it comes to national security, we never have and never will compromise on it.

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