The federal government is providing $ 40 million in funding to Nokia’s research center in the Ottawa area to develop 5G cellular network technology, as its direct competitor Huawei is at the center of a diplomatic quarrel between Canada and China.
Canadian Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains took advantage of the Davos World Economic Forum to make the announcement today.
According to Ottawa, the investment is expected to create 237 jobs across the country.
Finnish Nokia, Sweden’s Ericsson and China’s Huawei are on the run to take control of the development of 5G technology in Canada.
Ottawa is conducting a risk analysis of this technology on the privacy of Canadians and national security.
The arrest in Vancouver of one of the heads of Chinese telecom giant Huawei in December set fire to the powder between Canada and China.
Since then, retaliation on both sides has escalated tensions.
The Trump administration is putting a lot of pressure on Canada to remove Huawei. The United States believes that the company is likely to use its network developed in different countries to spy on them and pass on information to the Chinese government.
In addition to the United States, other allies in Canada, including Australia and New Zealand, have already banned Huawei products from the future 5G network on their territory.
But Bell and Telus, who have already adopted Huawei to develop fifth-generation telecommunications networks, are also putting pressure on Ottawa.
Blocking Huawei would result in financial losses of at least $ 1 billion for Telus and Bell, according to the Toronto daily The Globe and Mail .