House of Commons Hansard #64 of the 36th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

Scientific Research
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Ottawa South
Ontario

Liberal

John Manley Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we know that this was a very important announcement by Prime Minister Blair and President Clinton. We also know that there is already a case before the courts in Canada that will address the question of trademarks with respect to the so-called Harvard rat.

Some questions are already before the courts. We will also consider the other aspects of the announcement by Mr. Clinton and Mr. Blair with respect to the continued protection of intellectual property.

Scientific Research
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, I hope again that the Prime Minister will take the opportunity to indicate where he stands on this issue.

The Prime Minister knows that the WTO has ruled against Canada on pharmaceuticals. That ruling will mean another $200 million drained from Canada's health care system to the multinational pharmaceutical manufacturers.

Is the government prepared to appeal that ruling, and what steps is Canada taking to ensure that the benefit of modern pharmaceuticals and of genetic research will be available to all human kind and not appropriated primarily for the commercial—

Scientific Research
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. Minister for International Trade.

Scientific Research
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, the WTO panel's interim report was provided to the parties on a confidential basis on March 3. We are in the process of carefully examining the report and provided comments to the panel on March 10.

It is very important at this stage to look at it very carefully and measure its implications. The panel is expected to issue the final report to all WTO members some time in mid-April.

Canada Savings Bonds
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Scott Brison Kings—Hants, NS

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

Why is the Minister of Finance supporting the Bank of Canada's decision to privatize the Canada savings bonds program?

Canada Savings Bonds
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I am delighted to see the hon. member. I have not seen him since 6.30 this morning when he voted both ways on the clarity bill.

Let me say that decision has not been taken and it is not being contemplated.

Canada Savings Bonds
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Scott Brison Kings—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, at least I admit my mistakes. This minister tries to cover his up.

The fact is that the decision has been made. I have an internal document from Roy Flett, the chief of GSS with the Bank of Canada, who said

I have been asked...to prepare Government Securities Services...to move the Retail Debt operations outside the bank. Achieving this objective will be my main preoccupation over the next 12 to 18 months.

If the decision has not been made, why is a senior bureaucrat devoting the next 12 to 18 months of his life to making it happen?

Canada Savings Bonds
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member ought to know that the Bank of Canada administers the Canada savings bonds. In fact the marketing is done by Canada Investment and Savings which is an agency of the Department of Finance.

What is being examined is whether the status quo should exist or that they might merge the two under the Department of Finance. I would simply remind the hon. member that the Department of Finance is part of the public sector of this country.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

March 15th, 2000 / 2:30 p.m.

Reform

Monte Solberg Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, on November 4 the minister told the House that she found no breach of the law when HRDC funds were put in a trust in the Prime Minister's riding so that they would not lapse at the end of the fiscal year, completely contrary to what is stated in section 37 of the FAA.

The minister's opinion does not count for much in a situation like this. I want to know from the minister, has she referred this matter to the RCMP.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, again it is clear to all that there are administrative improvements that we can make in our department with regard to the management of grants and contributions. That is a fact.

It is also a fact that along with the men and women who are employees of the human resources development department we have a plan that is being implemented to improve this undertaking.

Those are the facts and that is what this story is all about.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Reform

Monte Solberg Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, right now employees of her department are trying to defend themselves in radio ads because of her incompetence in running that department.

We are not merely talking about an administrative matter; we are talking about a potential breach of the law.

I am suggesting to the minister that the actions of her department have violated section 37 of the Financial Administration Act. She has said that is not the case. She has offered that opinion to the House but her opinion in this matter does not count for anything.

Has the minister referred it to the RCMP?

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, I have had the chance to talk to the employees of my department on a number of occasions. They are not defending themselves from me. They are defending themselves from the maligning that they are receiving from that party.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Kamouraska—Rivière-Du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, in the course of the Human Resources Development Canada administrative scandal, we learned that Vidéotron had to give back $220,000 for 44 jobs that were not created.

In the case of Placeteco, $1 million of the $1.2 million grant was used to pay off debts rather than create jobs, and $200,000 has been lost track of.

Are we to understand that Placeteco will receive the same treatment as Vidéotron and that repayment will be required?

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, with regard to the particular file to which the hon. member is making reference, I can confirm as I have before that there were administrative problems with this particular file.

I can also confirm that my department has verified that the company provided invoices for supplies and salary costs which covered the amount of the transitional jobs fund contribution, and that in fact payments to the sponsor were consistent with the terms and the conditions of the transitional jobs fund program.

Human Resources Development
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Kamouraska—Rivière-Du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, the purpose of the grant money was to create jobs, not to pay bills.

Since at least $1 million was used for purposes other than creating jobs, should she not require an investigation into this case as well?