House of Commons Hansard #106 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, what this country needs is a government that will take a real leadership role in this file. We are the first national government prepared to bring in regulations to reduce greenhouse gases and improve air quality. We are prepared to act and I hope we will have the support of the Bloc Québécois.

Automobile Industry
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, today's news that Chrysler is going to eliminate 2,000 jobs in Canada makes it very clear that we have to get down to helping out our auto industry. Consumers want fuel efficient cars, but the government stands by and does absolutely nothing about it.

That is why the NDP put forward a green car strategy in 2003, supported by Greenpeace and the CAW. Too bad the Liberals would not adopt it because it would have transformed our industry and we would have been in the forefront of protecting jobs and creating new jobs as well.

Does the Prime Minister not understand that when it comes to building green cars, either we get it done or China, Japan and Korea will do it?

Automobile Industry
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, while we are obviously concerned by the announcements that we expect from Chrysler, this is a global company that is making global decisions. These are not related to policies in our country, as the member well knows. At the same time, we have seen a growth in other parts of the auto industry.

I appreciate some of the suggestions the leader of the NDP has made. They are much more positive than the motion tabled last week by the Leader of the Opposition, which would effectively propose that we cut emissions from the auto sector, from all sectors, by one-third in the next four and a half years. I wonder if he has any idea how that would devastate the Canadian auto sector.

Automobile Industry
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is wrong about the impact of his own actions. The workers in the auto sector are worried and rightly so. Their jobs are on the line. As people look for more efficient cars, they will not find them manufactured here because there has been no action.

The government says that it is a global marketplace, that the market will take care of it, but the market is not fair. Those other countries can sell their cars in Canada without limit, but we cannot sell good Canadian cars, built right here, to countries like China, Korea and Japan.

Is that why the Prime Minister thinks it is a good idea to sign a free trade deal, signing away our auto industry to Korea?

Automobile Industry
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the government has been pursuing negotiations with South Korea and with others for the express purpose of opening up Asian markets to Canadian products. I am glad to see that Buzz Hargrove seems to have completely reversed himself and now suggests that is exactly what we should be doing, trying to open Asian markets. The government will work hard with the industry to do that.

The government has ongoing consultations with the energy sector. There are some happening this very day. We think it is important to consult with industry before telling it to simply slash one-third of its production, as the opposition would.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, this government is making dangerous blunders in foreign affairs.

The Prime Minister provoked the People's Republic of China. Not surprisingly, today, the Chinese authorities are no longer cooperating with our diplomats. A Canadian citizen, Huseyin Celil, faces serious danger in China's justice system.

Does this government understand now why it cannot take such a cavalier attitude toward diplomacy?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey
Ontario

Conservative

Helena Guergis Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs and International Trade) (Sport)

Mr. Speaker, the situation with Mr. Celil is a great concern to our government. The hon. member knows that we have on many occasions expressed to the Chinese government that we would like it to recognize his Canadian citizenship.

In fact, when the Prime Minister directly raised this with the president of China, it was the Liberal Party that highly criticized him. Quite frankly, the hon. member and the Liberal Party should be ashamed and embarrassed at their hypocrisy.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's statements about the Chinese government and human rights have strained relations with that country.

Huseyin Celil's basic rights are further threatened because of the Prime Minister's belligerent attitude toward China.

Will the Prime Minister agree that he is behaving recklessly and that his approach is placing a Canadian citizen in serious danger?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey
Ontario

Conservative

Helena Guergis Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs and International Trade) (Sport)

Mr. Speaker, quite frankly, I cannot honestly believe that question has come from that hon. member's mouth.

Again, this situation is of great importance to our government. We have had on several occasions not only the Prime Minister raising this directly with the president of China, but no less than five of our top ministers also raising it with their counterparts.

With respect to some allegations that we heard about the torture of Mr. Celil, we know China is a signatory to the UN convention against torture and we expect it will live up to its UN obligations.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Dan McTeague Pickering—Scarborough East, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister was so outraged over no Canadian presence at Celil's trial that he ordered our diplomats to find the courthouse and take a seat. Telling diplomats to attend a trial that they have no idea where or when it is being held is not the way to go about foreign affairs.

The Prime Minister has failed to honour his personal commitment to Mr. Celil.

Why will he not take the time to pick up the phone and speak to the Chinese president, register his concerns about the treatment of Mr. Celil and demand that our officials be told of the trial proceedings now?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey
Ontario

Conservative

Helena Guergis Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs and International Trade) (Sport)

Mr. Speaker, I do not think I need to point out the hypocrisy, again, where that member is concerned. We have on many times expressed and asked that the Chinese officials recognize the Canadian citizenship of Mr. Celil. We have, in fact, directed officials there to head to the site, to remain on site, to gain contact with Mr. Celil in order to give him the consular services he is entitled as a Canadian citizen.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Dan McTeague Pickering—Scarborough East, ON

Mr. Speaker, let me give that member, who has just started this file, a little insight as to why the Prime Minister refuses to stand up for Mr. Celil.

We know he can admit now that his ability to stand up for Mr. Celil was so severely limited when he accused China of spying and turned a recent meeting with the Chinese president into an international farce.

How is it possible for the Prime Minister, or that minister, to stand up for Mr. Celil when the Chinese view him as something of a bumbling cold warrior who views Canada's second largest trading partner with such blatant suspicion and contempt?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the government, at all levels, has been clear. We view Mr. Celil as a Canadian citizen. At all opportunities, we have taken the time to raise his case, to express our concerns, to demand justice be done. Every time that member and the Liberal Party have said that we should say nothing, we should do nothing, we should take no action, just like they did with Mr. Arar and every Canadian citizen they forgot about when they were in office.

Official Languages
Oral Questions

February 8th, 2007 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Richard Nadeau Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, we have learned that the Canadian army has just done an about-face and will no longer require its top brass to be bilingual. It seems that for a certain number of its anglophone senior staff, mastering a minimum of French is an impossible mission.

How can the Minister for la Francophonie and Official Languages stand quietly by while the Canadian army steps back 40 years with regard to the use of the two official languages?

Official Languages
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent
Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner Minister of International Cooperation and Minister for la Francophonie and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, I congratulate our colleague for having put together a plan that shows our government's determination to promote both official languages. This strategy is based on results achieved by sound programs and policies that are more practical.

The transformation model provides a new plan that is clear, has specific objectives and has activities with measurable outcomes, while taking into account the operational requirements of the Canadian Forces.