Prime Minister Stephen Harper's decision to let a Chinese government-owned company buy into Canadian tar sands is bad for Canada and the world.
Late on a Friday afternoon, the federal government announced it will allow CNOOC, China's state-owned oil company, to take over Canadian fossil-fuel giant Nexen.
This takeover deal, which, among other things, puts three to six billion barrels of tar sands oil in CNOOC's hands, would be a big step in the wrong direction for the global climate if CNOOC exploits Nexen's reserves to their fullest extent.
Also, if the secretive and extreme FIPA trade deal with China passes, the effects of the Nexen takeover will be made far, far worse.
Even though it has been fought publicly, any day now, the Harper government could decide to pass the Canada-China Foreign Investment Protection Act, a major new trade deal that would grant unprecedented powers to Chinese corporations that own Canadian natural resources.
If FIPA passes, CNOOC will be able to sue Canadian governments in secret tribunals if our governments do anything to counter its growing interests - including common-sense environmental protections and job creation efforts.
FIPA would be like NAFTA, but more dangerous. Canada has already spent millions on penalties from lawsuits launched under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and is currently being sued by a U.S. corporation because Quebec placed a temporary moratorium on fracking to study its controversial health and safety impacts.
If FIPA passes, the door will be open for CNOOC and other Chinese corporations to do even worse.
The bottom line is Harper must protect Canadian democracy and natural resources from corporate greed.
Now that Harper has allowed this damaging Nexen takeover, he at least must not pass the secretive and extreme FIPA.