Following the firing of John McCallum, Canada’s Ambassador to China, Shuvaloy Majumdar joined Charles Adler Tonight to discuss McCallum’s now infamous remarks and the future of Canada-China relations. Majumdar is an MLI Munk Senior Fellow and head of MLI’s Centre for Advancing Canada’s Interests Abroad.
According to Majumdar, it is unclear to what extent McCallum’s remarks were directed by or tacitly endorsed by the federal government he served.
He argues that the approach to China has so far been “consistent since the Prime Minister’s arrival in the PMO.”
“In the last years, we’ve seen the most pro-China policy that Canada has ever exercised,” Majumdar explains. “[China] is not a country that is determined to be a good economic partner, it doesn’t act like a partner in its diplomacy, it doesn’t act that way through its state-run or state-influenced corporations.”
“Over the last few years, it has become increasingly clear that China is not interested in integrating into the international world order as we know it, but replacing it altogether with a Beijing-centric one.”
In addition to discussing Canada-China relations, Majumdar also reiterated what experts in allied countries and in Canada’s security community have been saying for a long time: allowing Huawei to develop Canada’s 5G infrastructure could have serious ramifications for Canada.
Ultimately, whether its the firing of McCallum, a governmental loss of innocence with regards to Chinese aggression, or a more sober view on Chinese state influence over countries like China, Majumdar believes that Canada is waking up to the realities of 21st century China.
“At the end of the day, we’re now seeing the beginning of a strategic reset.”