The opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Decima Reports. Now that the House of Commons industry, science and technology committee has heard from all its witnesses, it is working on a draft report on foreign ownership limits. A final set of recommendations should be delivered to Industry minister Allan Rock by the end of the month or early in April.   The overwhelming consensus from the proceedings is that the investment restrictions should be at least liberalized, if not scrapped altogether. ILECs, CLECs, lobbyists, regulators and academics all agreed on this. Only SaskTel, which as a provincial Crown corporation does not rely on market forces to the same extent as other telcos, and the telecom unions oppose changing the rules. The workers’ representatives raised several valid points about loss of jobs and sovereignty. But many of those concerns can be handled through legislative means. Should the union leaders find Buzz Hargrove in a less than belligerent mood, the Canadian Auto Workers president could explain how the Auto Pact has protected Canadian jobs even while the car manufacturers are owned by Detroit. The tough part is deciding how much political will the politicians have when writing their report. A clear-headed approach would recommend symmetrical lifting of the regulations. Telus’ standing as an ILEC in the West and parts of Quebec, a CLEC in the East and a WSP across the country show how blurred the definitions have become. Similar rules should apply to all telcos. But that may be a hard sell politically. Caution may override common sense. The temptation is for the MPs to take the easy way out. They may decide to opt for a tiered approach, opening foreign capital for smaller players while punishing the telecom giants. Another option could be the institution of a licensing scheme. This, too, would prove foolhardy. By instigating the foreign investment review, Rock was taking a bold move in response to longstanding industry demands. The danger is that the committee will take a middle of the road attitude. And the only things in the middle of the road are yellow lines and dead raccoons.