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Canada needs to quickly ramp up support for the nation’s critical minerals industry to counter a “gap” caused by its recent crackdown on foreign investment, says Frontier Lithium Inc.’s top executive.

The government’s move to limit investment from state-owned entities into Canada’s critical minerals resources is causing stress in the mining industry, CEO Trevor Walker said Tuesday in a BNN Bloomberg TV interview. Walker, whose firm is exploring for lithium in northern Ontario, cited the “tightening” of China investment into Canada as of particular concern.

“That’s a gap that needs to be filled and can only be filled by government,” he said. “And that has to take place quickly.”

The federal government strengthened rules around foreign investments in critical minerals last month and ordered three Chinese firms to sell their stakes in a trio of Canadian lithium explorers. More than two dozen Canadian miners have investors linked to China, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.