The politicization of foreign investment

Partner and co-chair of Torys’ Competition and Antitrust Practice Dany Assaf recently wrote an article for The Embassy reviewing the current state of global foreign investment, with a focus on the effect—and potential effect—of Canadian national security policy on the country’s economy. Dany frames his comment around some of the conclusions drawn from his study, Foreign Direct Investment and the National Interest: A Way Forward, published last year. Below is an excerpt of the article.

The key for us as Canadians is to continually assess, as we attempted to do in our study, whether the national interest is best being served with our enforcement approach and with our messaging in light of global developments and Canadian economic needs. The best framework to examine this question is through two lenses. Firstly, what does the Canadian economy currently appear to require to make the most of its potential for the benefit of Canadians? secondly, what are the general global trends that we are competing with and against?

Regarding the first lens, across the board, the Canadian economy continues to need basic inputs to pull the country into high growth mode. It needs capital investment and jobs. Most often these two are connected, but not always. For example, in Alberta there are jobs, but the province needs greater capital investment to make the most of its economic opportunity, including as that opportunity relates to the oil sands.

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