On November 2, the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, issued the following statement regarding the Canadian government’s decision on recent investments in Canadian critical minerals companies and regarding modernization efforts under the Investment Canada Act (ICA):
“While Canada continues to welcome foreign direct investment, we will act decisively when investments threaten our national security and our critical minerals supply chains, both at home and abroad. In accordance with the ICA, foreign investments are subject to review for national security concerns, and certain types of investment—such as those in the critical minerals sectors—receive enhanced scrutiny.
“Therefore, we reviewed a number of investments in Canadian companies engaged in the critical minerals sector, including lithium. These companies were reviewed via the multi-step national security review process, which involves rigorous scrutiny by Canada’s national security and intelligence community.
As a result of that process, the Government of Canada has ordered the divestiture of the following investments by foreign investors in Canadian critical mineral companies:
Zangge Mining Investment (Chengdu) Co., Ltd. is required to divest itself of its investment in Ultra Lithium Inc. [ULT ↗-TSXV].
“The government’s decisions are based on facts and evidence and on the advice of critical minerals subject matter experts, Canada’s security and intelligence community, and other government partners.
“Transparency and certainty are core principles for the government’s modernization efforts where the ICA is concerned. Today we are announcing the outcome of final orders made under section 25.4(1) of the ICA. These new and strengthened efforts will improve the administration of Canada’s investment review regime. To ensure transparency, we will continue to announce outcomes of such orders going forward.
“The government will continue to work toward an ICA framework that is well calibrated to ensure Canada’s continued prosperity and to face evolving national security challenges.
“Critical minerals are essential to powering the green digital economy of tomorrow. Increasing demand for these all-important minerals are presenting Canada with a generational economic opportunity. We are committed to seizing that opportunity while delivering on the country’s ambitious climate goals.
“The federal government is determined to work with Canadian businesses to attract foreign direct investments from partners that share our interests and values. Canada’s critical minerals are key to the future prosperity of our country. We will continue to encourage and work with Canadian businesses that require investment capital, by helping to identify and find partnerships that will serve in the best interest of Canadian businesses, workers, and the economy.
“Today’s direction comes as the Government of Canada finalizes its Critical Minerals Strategy ↗, which will position Canada as the global supplier of choice for critical minerals.”