Federal government issues additional directions for interactive digital media

Ministers provide guidelines for applying the Investment Canada Act

Federal government issues additional directions for interactive digital media

Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry François-Philippe Champagne and Minister of Canadian Heritage Pascale St-Onge have provided additional guidelines regarding how the Investment Canada Act can be applied to investments that involve interactive digital media.

“The Government of Canada is determined to work with Canadian businesses, provinces, territories and municipalities to attract foreign direct investments from partners that advance Canada’s long-term economic competitiveness and are consistent with our national security interests,” the ministers said.

With the federal government stating it is set to act on investments that may be a threat to national security, it provided additional directions for the Investment Canada Act’s application to investments involving interactive digital media.

“All foreign investments are subject to national security review. Starting today, investments in the interactive digital media sector by entities owned or influenced by foreign states, particularly states that engage in activities that may pose a risk to Canada’s national security, will be subject to enhanced scrutiny,” the ministers said.

They further stated that stricter undertakings for a longer amount of time may be required for net benefit reviews for foreign investments within the cultural interactive digital media sector, especially businesses that created their own original intellectual properties.

The ministers had delved into how the role of interactive digital media in the lives of Canadians has been steadily growing as it is one of the largest forms of entertainment and is applied in learning and education.

Given that the interactive digital media sector has gained recognition overseas and attracted foreign investment, the ministers pointed out that it may come with its own set of dangers.

“The Government of Canada recognizes that hostile state-sponsored or state-influenced actors may try to leverage foreign investments in the interactive digital media sector to spread disinformation and manipulate information,” the ministers said.

“We will continue to encourage and work with Canadian businesses that require investment capital, by helping to identify and find partnerships that will be in the best interest of Canada’s businesses, workers and economy,” they said.

 

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