Political tensions: reluctance of business people from the Mauricie to go to China

Entrepreneurs in the Trois-Rivières region who have business relations with China no longer want to take the risk of setting foot there because of growing tensions with Canada.

The major aeronautical subcontractor Delastek of Shawinigan has been operating a representation near Shanghai since 2016. However, its president, who has in mind the imprisonment of Canadians Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig on suspicion of espionage, does not plan to go there soon.

“I haven’t been there lately. It is more or less recommended to go there now, given the context, ”observed Claude Lessard.

The retired industrialist Laurent Verreault had, several years ago, cut ties with the Middle Kingdom when he realized that equipment manufactured by his company was being copied there. He would not advise Canadians to travel there. “You go there as a director of a company, as a CIO where people know you. However, for them others, accusing yourself of anything is easy. […] How do you defend yourself in China? ”Asked the former president of the GLV group.

Former CSIS member and geopolitics expert Michel Juneau-Katsuya strongly advises against going there. “Businessmen, business figures, diplomatic figures or even an ordinary citizen are in danger of going to China,” he said.

Actors in the economic scene have refused to comment publicly for fear of offending Beijing.

At Olymel, a major pork exporter, taking a position is out of the question. “No comments on the state of this market or on the state of relations with China,” said Richard Vigneault, spokesperson for the company.

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