House of Commons Hansard #68 of the 36th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was money.

Topics

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Susan Whelan Essex, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday Nick Parsons arrived on Parliament Hill. He drove his combine all the way from Dawson Creek, British Columbia to Ottawa to bring attention to the problems that Canadian farmers are facing right across Canada.

Can the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food tell the House how the government recognized Mr. Parsons' efforts?

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings
Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, we recognized Mr. Parsons' efforts in a number of ways.

I personally spent an hour with Mr. Parsons yesterday, commending him for his initiative and the awareness he has brought to all Canadians of the importance of the family farm and the agricultural industry across the country. We shared thoughts and ideas about how we can do even more.

Even better than meeting with me, he met with our Prime Minister, and they too shared thoughts. The Prime Minister stressed the importance of the many things we have done for Canadian agriculture and that we are looking at doing even more.

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

March 21st, 2000 / 2:45 p.m.

Reform

Deepak Obhrai Calgary East, AB

Mr. Speaker, prior to 1984 the Export Development Corporation published a list of Canada account loans that included the amount and the recipients of the loans. Today the Minister for International Trade and the EDC rely on secrecy and confidentiality rules to hide these controversial and high risk loans from Canadians.

Past Liberal governments chose to lay their cards on the table regarding the EDC. Why is this Liberal government hiding the details?

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear. The EDC has earned the auditor general's award for annual reporting three times over the last six years. The auditor general has access to the board of directors' minutes—

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

The Speaker

Order, please. We will hear the minister.

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Papineau—Saint-Denis, QC

Mr. Speaker, some people really do not like good news in the House.

The auditor general has given the EDC the award for annual reporting three times over the past six years. The auditor general has access to the board of directors' minutes of meetings, transactions, details and financial records.

In 1998 the auditor general said “In my opinion, the transactions of the corporation have in all significant respects been in accordance with the Financial Administration Act”.

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Reform

Deepak Obhrai Calgary East, AB

Mr. Speaker, the EDC is a government crown corporation that relies on taxpayers' money to fund its operations. Unfortunately for the Canadian taxpayer, the EDC remains unaccountable to parliament and the auditor general for its controversial lending practices.

What is the government hiding, another get rich scheme for Liberal cronies?

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, this again is just another attempt by the political right in the country to misinform Canadians about this 56 year old institution.

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

The Speaker

Order, please. I would invite the hon. minister to be very judicious in his choice of words.

Export Development Corporation
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Papineau—Saint-Denis, QC

Mr. Speaker, Canadians have the right to know. Let me be clear for the seven year old Reform Party. The EDC does not give out money or subsidies. The EDC lends money from its own coffers, not taxpayers' money, on a commercial basis. That is what it does.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis Winnipeg North Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, I am not sure the Prime Minister appreciates the damage he has done by refusing to take action on bill 11. His statements have been interpreted by Ralph Klein as approval for bill 11 and they amount to a betrayal of all of those Canadians fighting to stop this destructive legislation.

Is this the sum total of federal leadership: sitting on the fence with fingers crossed, hoping the problem will go away? Is this the best Canadians can expect from their government?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre
Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister could not have been clearer. Alberta, like all provinces in their legislation, must respect the five basic principles of the Canada Health Act.

There is another question and it is whether this bill and the measures it represents will do anything about the problems facing medicare. In fact, the evidence is that it will not. With private for profit clinics the waiting lists are longer and the costs are higher.

We hope that Premier Klein will listen to the people of Alberta and withdraw the legislation.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis Winnipeg North Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, I am glad the health minister answered the question because it shows the contrast between his answer and how two former health ministers of the Liberal government would have responded to that question. They would have stood in the House and said absolutely no to Ralph Klein. In fact, Monique Bégin, a former health minister, would have said that Canadians want leadership, they want a person of courage.

I want to know from this minister if he will get off the fence and if he is prepared to show the courage of his convictions, the courage of the convictions of former health ministers, and give leadership to Canadians who want—