Evidence of meeting #41 for Foreign Affairs and International Development in the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament’s site, as are the minutes.) The winning word was weapons.

A recording is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

  • Habib Massoud  Deputy Director, Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Division, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade
  • Paul Galveias  Senior Export Control Officer, Export Controls Division, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade
  • Mark Fried  Policy Coordinator, Oxfam Canada, and Member, Control Arms Coalition
  • Hilary Homes  Campaigner, International Justice, Security and Human Rights, Amnesty International, and Member, Control Arms Coalition
  • Lina Holguin  Policy Director, Oxfam-Québec, and Member, Control Arms Coalition
  • Kenneth Epps  Senior Program Officer, Project Ploughshares, and Member, Control Arms Coalition
  • Steve Torino  President, Canadian Shooting Sports Association
  • Tony Bernardo  Executive Director, Canadian Shooting Sports Association
  • Solomon Friedman  Lawyer, As an Individual

3:50 p.m.

Conservative

Bob Dechert Mississauga—Erindale, ON

How does the Canadian export control process compare to the United States process, for example?

3:50 p.m.

Senior Export Control Officer, Export Controls Division, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade

Paul Galveias

They're relatively similar.

By way of explanation, if I may, Canada is a member of four existing export control regimes. The one that deals with munitions items primarily is the Wassenaar arrangement. We are one of 41 states that are like-minded and belong to this arrangement of export controls. The United States is a member as well.

We have commonly articulated and commonly understood principles of what we do: transparency, both in conducting our export controls and in how we report on results and items—such as not contributing to destabilizing accumulations of arms in various areas and other states. So as far as we and the U.S. go, we have very similar operating principles that we work on—

3:50 p.m.

Conservative

Bob Dechert Mississauga—Erindale, ON

Would that be considered—

3:50 p.m.

Senior Export Control Officer, Export Controls Division, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade

Paul Galveias

—but the actual systems are quite different.

3:50 p.m.

Conservative

Bob Dechert Mississauga—Erindale, ON

I'm sorry to interrupt. How do we compare to China and Russia?

3:50 p.m.

Senior Export Control Officer, Export Controls Division, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade

Paul Galveias

I'm not as familiar with the Chinese system, so I would be unable to give any meaningful comparison.

As far as the Russian system goes, we do not have a single state-authorized exporter for munitions goods, as the Russians do with Rosoboronexport. Russia is a Wassenaar member as well, so it has signed on to the common principles of how export controls can be conducted. The Canadian export control system is, in Canada, predicated upon the Export and Import Permits Act.

3:50 p.m.

Conservative

Bob Dechert Mississauga—Erindale, ON

How do our checks work? How do we check who the arms might be shipped to?

3:50 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Dean Allison

Bob, that's all the time you have.

Go ahead and finish the answer.

3:50 p.m.

Senior Export Control Officer, Export Controls Division, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade

Paul Galveias

The Canadian export control system is concerned not only with the goods that are being exported, but also with the destination—to whom they are going and how they will be used. Depending upon the location, we use, to a greater or lesser extent, a consultative process within the Department of Foreign Affairs and with other government departments that have knowledge of or interest in the area to have them express their concerns and to evaluate, with due diligence, the proposed transfer.

3:50 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Dean Allison

Thank you very much.

We're now going to turn it over to Mr. LeBlanc.

Seven minutes, please.

June 11th, 2012 / 3:50 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Beauséjour, NB

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Thank you, gentlemen, for being here.

I want to follow up on a line of questioning that Mr. Dewar and Madam Laverdière began.

I was interested to know that in the preparatory meetings of July 2011 there was a decision to include members of civil society as part of the Canadian delegation. I'm interested in how that process was undertaken, what criteria you used to decide who would be part of that delegation, and if other groups had applied or were interested. I'm just curious as to how you arrived at the composition of the delegation.

3:55 p.m.

Deputy Director, Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Division, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade

Habib Massoud

The composition of the delegation is the responsibility of the minister. The minister decides who will be on the delegation, so I would ask that you ask the minister that question.

3:55 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Beauséjour, NB

But from your long experience—and I understand that you don't want to speak for the minister—is there typically any kind of criteria, or do you simply get an e-mail that says “this will be the delegation”, and you have no understanding of how that was arrived at?

3:55 p.m.

Deputy Director, Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Division, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade

Habib Massoud

It's the minister's decision. You should ask the minister.

3:55 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Beauséjour, NB

You're just then informed of the decision. There's no process that goes on in the department to identify groups. At one point there's a ministerial decision as to the composition of the group. Is that...?