17 Jan 2024, 09:11

Canada to stop funding research with foreign risks to national security

OTTAWA, Jan 17, 2024 (BSS/AFP) - The Canadian government unveiled Tuesday
restrictions on research funding to prevent the sharing with China, Iran and
Russia of advanced technologies developed by Canadian universities, citing
national security concerns.

It also published a long list of sensitive research it does not want shared,
including artificial intelligence, quantum science, robotics, biotechnology,
advanced weapons, space and satellite technology, and human-machine

"Canadian research is at the forefront of discovery," Innovation Minister
Francois-Philippe Champagne said in a statement.

But, he added, "its openness can make it a target for foreign influence,
increasing the potential risks for research and development efforts to be
misappropriated to the detriment of national security."

The announcement comes after the Canadian Security Intelligence Service
warned that China, for example, was using joint academic research
partnerships to obtain cutting edge technologies for economic and military

Canadian media said researchers at 50 Canadian universities have published
joint scientific papers with scientists connected to China's military.

Recent collaborations covered areas such as quantum cryptography and
computing, and space technologies.

Ottawa listed 103 entities including foreign universities (85 from China, 12
from Iran and six from Russia) that it believes pose risks to national
security. Canadian researchers will no longer be eligible for federal funding
for research done in partnership with them.

The new policy is to come into effect in the coming months, but Champagne
said federal granting agencies may start to take research affiliations into
account now.

The ban could affect thousands of applications for research funding from the
Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Natural Sciences and Engineering
Research Council of Canada, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research
Council of Canada, and others.

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