House of Commons Hansard #225 of the 35th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was environment.

Topics

World Bank Report
Oral Question Period

September 18th, 1995 / 2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Jane Stewart Brant, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Finance.

Yesterday the World Bank made public its report on the wealth of countries. We are all thrilled to see that Canada ranks as the second richest country in the world. I ask the minister to tell us what this means for Canada and for Canadians.

World Bank Report
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Scarborough East
Ontario

Liberal

Doug Peters Secretary of State (International Financial Institutions)

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for the question.

I am glad to share with my colleagues the decisions of the World Bank and the new studies they have done and the new methods they have used. It not only measures the industrial output but the national wealth and the human resources of a country.

I am proud to say that Canada now ranks number two in wealth, complementing the recent statement by the United Nations that said we were number one in the world.

Health Care
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Reform

Grant Hill Macleod, AB

Mr. Speaker, another issue of importance on the Canadian agenda is health care, even in Quebec.

The Liberals made a promise in the red book to have a national forum on health care chaired by the Prime Minister. Could we have a progress report, please?

Health Care
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Sudbury
Ontario

Liberal

Diane Marleau Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to say that the forum is doing its work. It has released a number of papers. It recently released one in Toronto on the issue of private and public funding. It will commence a series of public hearings some time this fall. Stay tuned, there will be more coming.

Health Care
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Reform

Grant Hill Macleod, AB

Mr. Speaker, the national forum on health is an abject failure, but there is a meeting going on right now that might bear some fruit. The provincial health

ministers are meeting in B.C. Is the government going to listen to constructive suggestions coming from that meeting?

Health Care
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Sudbury
Ontario

Liberal

Diane Marleau Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, one of the first things I would like to state in the House is that medicare works. The Canada Health Act enables medicare to work.

I am going to Victoria. I am leaving as soon as question period is over. I am going there to work with the provinces. I will work with them in any way I possibly can, but I will not allow the creation of a two tier system.

Quebec Referendum
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Labour. After publicly expressing her vision of democracy by stating that the government would respect the Quebec referendum results, the Minister of Labour, who is responsible for the referendum in Quebec, was put in her place by the Prime Minister a few minutes later.

Since she can no longer express her convictions in public, can the Minister of Labour at least undertake to plead privately with the Prime Minister to convince him to recognize the results of the Quebec referendum?

Quebec Referendum
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Saint-Henri—Westmount
Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, as I said before, Quebecers have the right to express clearly and democratically what they want their future to be, and we will respect this right. That is why we are sure that, faced with a clear question, Quebecers will say No to Quebec's separation from the rest of Canada.

Quebec Referendum
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, does the minister admit that, by doing an about-face and saying she no longer recognizes the obligation to respect the results of the referendum, she is renouncing the loyalty she owes to Quebecers?

Quebec Referendum
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Saint-Henri—Westmount
Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, who can claim to be real Quebecers? After reading the bill's preamble, which says that we will lose our identity as Quebecers if we stay in Canada, I wonder who they think they are. I myself am a proud Quebecer and I will vote No.

Bosnia
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Reform

Bob Mills Red Deer, AB

Mr. Speaker, today we have heard a great deal about the October 30 Quebec deadline, but the government has an important September 30 deadline on the future of the Bosnia peacekeeping mission. Given the massive ongoing fighting that is occurring in Bosnia and the fact that this afternoon Boutros Boutros-Ghali announced that the peacekeepers should leave Bosnia, will the Minister of Foreign Affairs do the right thing and immediately announce that our troops will be withdrawn from Bosnia?

Bosnia
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Michel
Québec

Liberal

André Ouellet Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, Canadian soldiers are doing the right thing every day in that part of the world. They are there serving in a very difficult environment in order to protect civilians and help people to be fed and protected. Canada and Canadians should be very proud of what our soldiers are doing there.

We are committed to the end of the mandate. It is quite clear that Canada will respect the mandate it has received from parliamentarians and that the Canadians will stay to the end of the mandate. We will have a chance to discuss with our colleagues and other countries who are contributing troops in that part of the world what is the best thing to do in order to enhance the peace process that is taking place.

We hope that Mr. Holbrooke, on behalf of the contact group, will conclude his negotiations with the parties in order to install peace for all the parties in the region.

Bosnia
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Reform

Bob Mills Red Deer, AB

Mr. Speaker, our troops have been hunkered down for months now. They are not delivering on their mandate, as Boutros Boutros-Ghali said today.

As the minister said, they are there for peacekeeping only. That is the only function they should be there for but there is no peace to keep. Again I ask the minister, why are you breaking faith with our troops, abandoning them-

Bosnia
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Speaker

Earlier in question period I mentioned that you should please address your questions through the Chair. I would ask you to do so please.

I am going to permit the hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs to answer.

Bosnia
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Michel
Québec

Liberal

André Ouellet Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I want to say through you to the hon. member that I do not know where he is getting his information.

The soldiers who are there now, those who have served there and those who have come back from Croatia have all indicated their pride in participating in such a UN peacekeeping operation, although it is a very difficult one.

The Canadian troops are part of a UN peacekeeping mission. If the secretary-general decides to terminate the mandate I am sure it will done through proper consultations and we will obviously respond to the decisions of the United Nations.

Despite what the hon. member is saying, there is still a task to be performed and Canadians will be performing it to the end.