House of Commons Hansard #136 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was federal.

Topics

Trade
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, yesterday in Montreal I had a very interesting and productive meeting with my colleagues, Ambassador Zoellick of the United States and Secretary Canales of Mexico.

We agreed on a number of practical steps to enhance trade and investment in North America that will increase the transparency and efficiency of NAFTA's chapter 11, establish a North American steel trade committee that will promote more openness and integration in the North American steel market and reduce exports related transaction costs in the NAFTA region. It is a work in progress, and we will continue.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Joe Clark Calgary Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Foreign Affairs. Did Secretary of State Colin Powell tell the Minister of Foreign Affairs that Canadian sources gave the United States information that led to the deportation to Syria of Mr. Arar? While he is at it, would he tell us whether Mr. Powell said that Canadian source was the RCMP?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I had a conversation with Secretary Powell and I raised this matter. I protested strongly to the United States that when Canadians are in the United States they should be treated as Canadians and returned to Canada. In the course of that discussion, he said to me that advice from his officials was that this was appropriate in terms of international law by the United States and it was covered by arrangements. That was his advice to me. This is what he was told by his officials.

Secretary Powell and I always have the frankness of accords. He knows very strongly that Canada is of the position that when Canadians are in the United States they should be treated as Canadians and returned to this country, and the Solicitor General and I work on that premise.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, with all due respect to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, that was not the question. The question was, did Colin Powell indicate to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, in a discussion with him, that information that came from Canadian sources resulted in Mr. Arar's incarceration for a year in Syria?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, in my conversation with Secretary Powell, he said that the American authorities had acted within their jurisdiction to take the steps they did based on information which they had received which justified the steps that they took. That is the information which he told me. That is what he gave me and of course that is what he was operating under.

Secretary Powell was perfectly frank with me. He operates on the basis of advice from officials like every other secretary of state in the world.

Infrastructure
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Brian Masse Windsor West, ON

Mr. Speaker, after nine years of creating potholes on the road to Damascus, the new Liberal leader says he now wants to pave it. As finance minister, he hiked the gas tax but did not give a penny to cities. Last September he opposed 10 year targets, but now he says he does not. My leader, Jack Layton, has been clear on the stance of supporting cities.

Infrastructure
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Infrastructure
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

The Speaker

Order, please. We have been through this once already. The hon. member for Windsor West has the floor. We will want to hear his question.

Infrastructure
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Brian Masse Windsor West, ON

They may be a fans of the Who. I am a fan of the Guess Who.

My question is for the sitting finance minister. Is the position of the Liberal government that sharing the gas tax means Canada does not need a permanent infrastructure program? Is that the real agenda?

Infrastructure
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa South
Ontario

Liberal

John Manley Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

You know, Mr. Speaker, if this Layton fellow ever shows up in here, he has already missed the one byelection in his province in which he could have offered himself, perhaps we will need biometrics to identify him at the door when he gets here.

I would suggest the hon. member look at the record of the government that established the first infrastructure program in 1993, and year after year have renewed it in order to contribute to the building of strategic and municipal infrastructure across this country. That will continue.

Government Assistance
Oral Question Period

October 8th, 2003 / 2:50 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has not even placed a phone call to Nova Scotians 10 days after hurricane Juan ripped through our province. He cannot be unaware that many desperate citizens have been forced to exhaust their limited resources to replace food lost in the power outage and to repair homes exposed to the elements.

I ask the Prime Minister this. Will the federal government provide immediate financial assistance to Nova Scotians on CPP disability or other vulnerable pensioners to ensure they are able to purchase the basic necessities of daily life?

Government Assistance
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I am supposed to meet with the Premier of Nova Scotia tomorrow morning. She cannot say I do not pay attention to Nova Scotia. That day the Minister of Defence and the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans rushed to Nova Scotia. They were the first to arrive. We had more than 1,000 soldiers doing their job.

The work of the federal government was well done. Of course, as I was departing for the west at that time, I could not be there. We have a big country. When we are in Vancouver it is difficult to have breakfast there and then lunch in Halifax.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Bob Mills Red Deer, AB

Mr. Speaker, the environment commissioner's report says that the government is moving too slow on evaluating older pesticides causing health and environmental problems. It says that the process for evaluating new pesticides is flawed and deadlines are not being met to get these products on the market.

The commissioner identified 406 pesticides which must be evaluated. In 15 years only 6 have been evaluated. What is taking so long? What is the problem?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, as I indicated yesterday, we have re-evaluated some 61 active ingredients. Of these, some have been phased out by their manufacturer. Others have been withdrawn from the market or are currently in the process of being phased out.

I want to reassure all Canadians that we take the regulation of pesticides very seriously. In fact the commissioner acknowledges that progress has been made.

Do we need to make additional progress? Yes. We now have new legislation. Regulations will promulgated in the spring of 2004, and with additional resources we will do an even better job in protecting health.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Bob Mills Red Deer, AB

Mr. Speaker, the commissioner says that only 6 out of 406 have been evaluated, so denying the problem does not mean there just is not one.

The government has been warned four times that its pesticide evaluation process is broken. It has done nothing. I quote the commissioner who says, “For an issue that touches health, this is unacceptable...Canadians have a right to expect better answers”.

When will the government speed up the evaluation process of these pesticides?