House of Commons Hansard #107 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was finance.

Topics

National Security
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Canadian Alliance

Stockwell Day Leader of the Opposition

They have been looking for too long, Mr. Speaker, and they are not looking too good.

With a struggling economy and the dollar at an all time low, we need a North American security perimeter.

Does the Prime Minister commit to making a North American security perimeter an immediate priority?

National Security
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Windsor West
Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray Deputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the American ambassador said on Canada AM yesterday:

Some people have put a spin on this that we want to eliminate the Canada-U.S. border. We have never suggested that. We have no plans to suggest that. We're talking about using technology as an ally on the U.S.-Canada border...some people have tried to spin this out of control.

If we look at what the American ambassador has said, it is directly in line with our approach, and he has certainly not adopted the fallacious Alliance approach.

National Security
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Grant Hill Macleod, AB

Mr. Speaker, the U.S. is really quite serious about this security perimeter. In spite of the infighting, we would like to propose something from the U.S. It asked for a specific proposal: visas from visitors from the Saudi Arabia.

Some of the individuals involved in the tragedy were from Saudi Arabia. Will the government consider visas for visitors from Saudi Arabia and show the U.S. good faith in these negotiations?

National Security
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Liberal

Elinor Caplan Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, over the last number of days we have repeated on numerous occasions in the House that we are discussing with the Americans a number of issues as they relate both to visas and to greater security.

I want to assure the member opposite that if he or anyone else has good ideas of things we should be talking to the Americans about, I ask them to give us those ideas.

National Security
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Grant Hill Macleod, AB

I could give quite a list, Mr. Speaker, and I do not hear any listening.

Visas from Saudi Arabian visitors is one thing. Here is another suggestion coming from the U.S. It would like to share passenger manifest information for individuals visiting from Canada.

I have another question for the government, and it is a constructive suggestion. Will we share passenger information with the U.S.? Yes or no.

National Security
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Liberal

Elinor Caplan Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, on greater border security for both Canada and the United States, there are a number of issues which are under active discussions with our American neighbours.

I want to quote American Ambassador Cellucci who said it very well. He said:

This is about working together. And that's exactly what both countries are doing right now.

He also said:

But I don't think anyone is saying you have to have exactly the same immigration policies.

Softwood Lumber
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the many regions of Canada and Quebec that depend on the forestry industry were already hard hit by the U.S. countervailing duties on softwood lumber.

But yesterday, the United States announced an additional antidumping duty of 12.6%, which further affects business and workers.

To support our regions, will the Prime Minister commit to asking President Bush to respect the spirit of the Free Trade Agreement by suspending all American duties on softwood lumber until the WTO issues its ruling?

Softwood Lumber
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

London—Fanshawe
Ontario

Liberal

Pat O'Brien Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, the member will know that the Prime Minister has raised this issue with President Bush on several occasions and as recently as at APEC last week in Shanghai.

Our policy is to proceed on a two track approach to this. We have filed at the WTO on October 25, and a series of intensive discussions with American and Canadian officials continues. However the solution to this is very clear and it has been clear all along. The Americans need to live up to the free trade spirit they claim to adhere to.

Softwood Lumber
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister may well have spoken to President Bush about this at APEC last week, but this decision was made yesterday at noon, and it is more urgent than ever.

I think that he must make another call, especially since the American allegations have always been rejected. Softwood lumber is not subsidized and the United States is well aware of this. What the Americans are doing is using stalling tactics; meanwhile, our industry is suffering.

Will the Prime Minister tell President Bush that we have had enough of their free trade talk and their protectionist walk? They will have to be consistent, and the Prime Minister needs to set things straight with the U.S. president.

Softwood Lumber
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

London—Fanshawe
Ontario

Liberal

Pat O'Brien Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, it is not often that I have seen the hon. member be naive in the House of Commons. However, I am afraid he is if he believes that the president of the United States is not subject to all kinds of pressure in his congress and that we do not have a situation where he needs to work with congress for certain other initiatives which he wants to take. The fact is his administration has been supporting this.

Privately we can get a different message, but publicly it is very clear that our approach has to be to consistently go forward with a two track policy and with a legal approach, if necessary, which we will win again. At the same time, we have to proceed with the discussions we have been having and which continue in Washington--

Softwood Lumber
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Joliette.

Softwood Lumber
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, the economy of regions in Quebec will be hard hit by the Americans' decisions to impose anti-dumping duties on top of countervailing duties, for a total of 30% . Yesterday, the Minister for International Trade said he was prepared to organize a meeting of the stakeholders at the appropriate time. I hope he got the message from the industry, which is asking him to organize the meeting.

Since the stakeholders in the softwood lumber industry want a meeting immediately to be sure that everyone is working together, does the Minister for International Trade intend to invite everyone to a meeting as soon as possible?

Softwood Lumber
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

London—Fanshawe
Ontario

Liberal

Pat O'Brien Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, surely the hon. member realizes that the minister and his officials are in daily contact with the stakeholders in this situation. We have tremendous support from the provinces. We have the support of most people in the industry. There are a few nervous nellies in one part of the country, but most of the industry supports the Minister for International Trade. He is showing outstanding leadership in keeping this consensus together and is in daily contact with those people who are affected by this file.

Softwood Lumber
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, I do not have the impression that the parliamentary secretary reads the same papers or the same press releases we do from industry representatives who are demanding a meeting immediately.

Is it not time for Canada and its American allies to launch a vast advertising campaign in the States to explain to Americans what they are doing to the Canadian industry, their prime trading partner, and to explain to American consumers that it is they who are footing the bill of the protectionist policy of their government and industry?

Softwood Lumber
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

London—Fanshawe
Ontario

Liberal

Pat O'Brien Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, I am sure my colleague is aware that there have been a number of initiatives taken by this government in the United States through the Canadian embassy, through a trip of the parliamentary subcommittee, which he and I attended, and through visits by the Canadian Parliamentary Association to build support in the United States because they understand that the American consumer is being unfairly hurt by the inefficient practices in the United States.