OTTAWA— The federal government will take more time to review the proposed sale of Canadian construction giant Aecon to a Chinese state-owned company, adding an extra layer of scrutiny because of advice from national security agencies.
Karl Sasseville, press secretary to Innovation, Science and Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains, said in a statement Monday that the extended review is part of the process for approving the purchase of Canadian companies by international players under the Investment Canada Act.
The extension gives the Liberal cabinet another 90 days to consider whether national security considerations should block the proposed Aecon takeover.
The added time comes after an initial 45-day “net benefit” review that included advice from the public safety department and national security agencies that include the RCMP and Canadian Security Intelligence Service.
“We follow the advice of those who actually have the information and intelligence necessary to make these determinations: our national security agencies,” Sasseville said.