A big part of the cost is the technology. It uses something called "phased array" antennas, which had previously been used for things like military radar. Those antennas consist of many antennas over the area of the panel.That is quite expensive gdmaclew, and I assume those are American dollars. That's $662.50 in Canadian Dollars. People who buy electronics early always pay more. I remember paying $1000 for an early satellite receiver and around the same price for a VCR in the 80's!
And that is supposed to excuse the waste? That SpaceX and others were planning to launch LEO satellites to offer global internet was known long before July 2019.The agreement with Telesat goes back to July 2019, long before SpaceX applied for any Canadian licences.
That's exactly what the press release says. "Telesat will be eligible to receive amounts under the agreement over a ten year period once the Telesat LEO constellation enters service." Telesat is one of those half dozen private companies that launched their LEO test satellite in January, 2018. SpaceX launched their test in February, 2018.It would make more sense to lease space from one of the other half dozen or so companies entering the business.