Mr. Speaker, MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates, Canada's leading aerospace company, has just decided to sell its space program to a large American arms manufacturer.
The sale includes RADARSAT-2, a state of the art satellite used for monitoring crops and forests, climate change, tracking ships at sea and mapping Arctic sea ice.
Canadian taxpayers paid $445 million, or about 85% of the total cost of developing this technology. In return we were promised large amounts of imagery and priority access to RADARSAT-2 in emergencies.
Once it is sold, Ottawa's ability to control what the satellite is used for and to use it in emergencies will be lost. Worse yet, the U.S. government would be able to use our satellite in ways that might contradict our interests. For example, it could assist its efforts to send a ship into the Northwest Passage without our consent.
The Harper government has indicated a desire to block foreign investments that threaten Canada's security interests. RADARSAT--