Canada: Licensing of an Egyptian-owned telecommunications firm

Measure #2385 | Published 3 Jun 2011 ▲


The Government of Canada is considering changes to its investment regime that may loosen some restrictions on foreign investment in the telecommunications sector. In the Throne Speech on March 3, 2010, the Government of Canada stated that it “will open Canada’s doors further to venture capital and to foreign investment in key sectors, including the satellite and telecommunications industries.”
At the same time, one specific case is being litigated within the existing regime. At issue is the licensing of Egyptian-owned mobile carrier Globalive Communications to provide services in Canada. The main developments to date are as follows:

  • On October 29, 2009 the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission ruled that Globalive did not comply with Canadian ownership and control requirements under the Telecommunications Act.
  • The Governor in Council varied the decision on November 10, 2009, thus allowing the company to offer telecommunications services in Canada.
  • On February 4, 2010, the Federal Court reversed the previous ruling of Governor in Council, stating that Globalive (or WIND Mobile as it was known since Fall 2009) is not Canadian owned. 45 days were given to file an appeal. 
  • On June 8, 2011, the Canadian Federal Court of Appeal ruled in favor of Globalive and allowed it to continue operations.

The Canadian Federal Court of Appeal ruling permitting Globalive (WIND Mobile) to continue its operations in Canada prevented protectionism to flourish. 

Any Evidence-Based Deliberation:

Question Result
Is there anything in the public record to suggest that evidence of the effectiveness of the proposed measure was considered during official deliberations? Yes
Is there any evidence that alternatives to the proposed measure were considered? Yes
Is there anything in the public record that suggests that empirical evidence informed the comparison across the alternatives available to government? Yes
Was such evidence identified? Yes
Is such evidence publicly available? Yes
Did the official decision-maker in question provide an explanation as to why a chosen measure was favoured over alternatives? Yes
Is there any evidence to suggest that potentially affected trading partners were consulted before the measures were taken? Don't Know
Is there any evidence that safeguards have been put in place to ensure that implementation of the initiative is transparent and non-discriminatory? Don't Know
Did the government state its intention to review the measure within one year of implementation? Don't Know

Implementing Jurisdiction:

Affected Trading Partners:

Measure type:

Affected Sectors:

Affected Tariff Lines:

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Date Discovered:

Implemented: No

Date of inception:

GTA Evaluation: Amber


See the hyperlinked material in the description.


Government Response:

Glossary of trade terms