RCMP Axe Contract With Chinese Radio Equipment Supplier Following Political Backlash

The RCMP suspended a contract with China-linked communications company in wake of backlash stemming from recent revelations of alleged Chinese political interference in Canadian federal elections.

Canada’s Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino on Thursday confirmed the RCMP suspended a radio communications contract with Ontario-based Sinclair Technologies, a company focused on designing and manufacturing radio frequency filtering systems. The contract comes under scrutiny following a recent exposé over potential election meddling by the Chinese government, sparking concerns among security experts about the Chinese Communist Party gaining access to RCMP communications data.

Although Sinclair Technologies is based in Canada, it is controlled by Shenzhen-based Hytera Communications, of which the Chinese government has a 10% stake via an investment fund. The company was banned by the US Federal Communications Commission last year over national security risks. Hytera is embroiled in accusations of conspiring to steal trade secrets from US-based Motorola Solutions, after allegedly recruiting and hiring Motorola employees to gain confidential information between 2007 and 2020.

The contract, awarded by the federal government in October 2021 with a price tag of $549,637, was designed to provide RCMP with a system that restricts eavesdropping on police land-based radio communications. When pressed about the deal, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said it was “disconcerting,” particularly in wake of warnings regarding recent Chinese espionage and political interference. Meanwhile, opposition leader Pierre Poilievre called it an “astonishing” blunder. “I mean, it’s almost something that you’d expect to be out of a spy novel, but characters in spy novels would never be that incompetent,” he said.

Information for this briefing was found via CBC News. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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