House of Commons Hansard #136 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was afghanistan.

Topics

Softwood Lumber
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Vancouver Centre, BC

Mr. Speaker, this is a joke. The government signed such a bad deal that not only did it leave $1 billion in the U.S., but today our softwood producers are actually paying more in export taxes under this deal than if the deal had never been signed. Now the U.S. lumber lobby wants these excessive taxes increased even more.

When will the government start making Canadian trade policy in Canada and for Canada, and not in Washington?

Softwood Lumber
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Macleod
Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade and Minister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, indeed this is no joking matter. We are talking about the livelihoods of Canadian families. It is because of the decision taken by this government that those families are back at work, that the industry is stable, that we have an agreement that is good for seven to nine years, which is not what we had under a Liberal government.

Equalization
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Simms Bonavista—Gander—Grand Falls—Windsor, NL

Mr. Speaker, on April 4 Wade Locke, an economist with Memorial University, did a study which showed that Newfoundland and Labrador would gain over $5 billion in the new budget. However, a week later through an exchange of e-mails Mr. Locke discovered he was given wrong information by the finance minister's office. When he revised the numbers, it turned out Newfoundland and Labrador would actually lose money under the new formula.

Why did the Minister of Finance mislead the work of the independent economist whose goal was only to seek out the truth?

Equalization
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the proposal with respect to Newfoundland and Labrador is clear. There are two equalization programs.

One is the accord that was negotiated by the current premier of Newfoundland with the former Liberal government. That is the same today as it was six months ago, as it was a year ago, and it will be the same a year from now. The government of Newfoundland and Labrador can choose to go ahead with that agreement.

Equalization
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Wascana, SK

That is not true.

Equalization
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Whitby—Oshawa, ON

Relax, Ralph, I am going to explain this.

The second is the O'Brien formula and the government of Newfoundland and Labrador has the choice of going that route--

Equalization
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Bonavista--Gander--Grand Falls--Windsor.

Equalization
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Simms Bonavista—Gander—Grand Falls—Windsor, NL

Mr. Speaker, perhaps the minister should relax while I explain to him an e-mail exchange from his office. It said, and this was in the St. John's Telegram:

I have apologized to Wade that a previous e-mail from one of our staff may have misled him.

That was from his office. The minister is responsible for a great deal of misinformation. Remember income trusts? Remember interest deductibility?

The premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, Danny Williams, has called for the minister's resignation. Will he stand in the House and respond to the premier's request?

Equalization
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I suggested to the premier of Newfoundland and Labrador the last time that perhaps we could have a hockey game together so we could settle it. He would have to pay for his own jerseys, of course, if we were going to do that.

There is an important choice for the government of Newfoundland and Labrador. It can either go ahead with the Atlantic accord, which is the same as it has been since it was negotiated by the current premier, or it can go the route of the new equalization formula. That is a choice for Newfoundland and Labrador.

The reason this is necessary, of course, is that the premiers themselves could not come to an agreement with respect to equalization, so it was incumbent on the federal government to do that.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

April 19th, 2007 / 2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Dave Van Kesteren Chatham-Kent—Essex, ON

Mr. Speaker, today China's official news agency is reporting that Huseyin Celil has been sentenced to life in prison and the deprivation of all political rights, as well as a second sentence of a further 10 years in prison.

Can the Minister of Foreign Affairs inform the House of the government's reaction to this news?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister, members of the government and I were deeply disappointed to hear the news this morning with respect to the verdict and the sentence of Mr. Celil. I spoke with his wife Kamila to express those sympathies as well as our ongoing support and commitment on this case.

Chinese authorities have persistently refused to respond to our concerns with respect to this Canadian citizen. In addition, there are concerns for Mr. Celil's health and his well-being. I immediately called in the Chinese chargé d'affaires this morning to speak with him and I expressed these views and Canada's ongoing interest in this case.

We believe that China has not lived up to the Canada-China consular agreement. We will conduct a thorough review to determine whether this remains an effective way to safeguard Canada-China citizens travelling and passports. I will be raising this matter next week in China.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Wayne Marston Hamilton East—Stoney Creek, ON

Mr. Speaker, this is the second time today the competence of that minister has been called into question.

Mr. Celil has been in jail for over a year on unspecified charges. Canadian officials have not even been able to speak to him to this point in time, and now we hear the government is taking this kind of action which should have been taken ages ago.

Just yesterday I received a message from a minister that said Mr. Celil had received a nine year sentence. It is clear that hardly anybody knows what is going on in the government.

I am pleased to hear that the--

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The hon. the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

I will leave it to others, Mr. Speaker, to determine who knows what is going on.

We have been involved in this serious case from the moment we first learned that Mr. Celil had gone through Uzbekistan back to China and has been in custody. We have made persistent attempts to see him through consular officials. We have had members of the consul in Urumqi following this case.

We continue to represent his interests there to the best of our ability, to make representations through the Chinese government, to have access to Mr. Celil, to provide support for his wife and family here in Canada. We continue to do so.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Wayne Marston Hamilton East—Stoney Creek, ON

Mr. Speaker, as I recall, it started with the Prime Minister making his comments on human rights on an airplane going to the South Asia conference which did nothing to help that individual.

The government has done nothing over the year to secure a fair trial for that individual or legal representation. The government has done nothing to keep him safe from torture, which we know happens in Chinese jails.

Beyond a much needed apology, what is the government going to do beyond today?