The Alliance Canada Hong Kong, a Canada-based NGO advocating for democracy in Hong Kong, has published a report examining China’s foreign influence operations in Canada. According to the report, titled “In Plain Sight: Beijing’s Unrestricted Network of Foreign Influence in Canada”:
Beijing’s strategy has included targeting of global networks, international norms, and multilateral platforms. Weaponizing integration, the CCP carves its place in the international sphere, joining established global institutions to ultimately undermine and reshape them — United Nations, Wall Street, Hollywood, international ports and infrastructures, World Health Organization to name a few. While there have been Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) briefings, media reports, and repeated warnings of widespread Chinese foreign interference operations in Canada, there still is a persistent lack of knowledge and understanding of these networks of influence within Canadian institutions, politics, and society.
The tactics deployed by the CCP and its affiliates fall under seven broad categories covered in this report: (1) political influence, (2) elite capture, (3) surveillance and intimidation, (4) information and narrative discursion, (5) academic influence and intellectual property vulnerabilities, (6) national security, and (7) the United Front Work Department (UFWD).
The report is an overview and provides some insights into the CCP’s influence operations in Canada. The activities carried out by the Chinese party-state and its affiliates often blurs the line between foreign influence and foreign interference operations. To differentiate between influence and interference, it is imperative to consider these activities under three categories: covert, coercion, and corruption.
Read the full report here.
China is known for its use of “soft power” in order to support its goals of expanding global influence. It has been actively attempting to interfere in the current US elections, albeit at a smaller scale than Russia and with the aim of sowing confusion rather than supporting either candidate. For more GIOR reporting on China, go here.