House of Commons Hansard #151 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was companies.

Topics

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, I asked the Prime Minister the same simple, crucial question three times and, as he often does in this House, he avoided it. Canadians and our troops deserve a straight answer from him, so I am asking the question again.

Is our government in talks with NATO or any of our NATO allies to come up with a plan for replacing our troops in Kandahar in February 2009?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, no such negotiations are currently unde rway, and our NATO allies do not currently expect us to make a decision.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, it is not for NATO to ask for the replacement of our troops. The fact is that our combat mission in Kandahar will end in February 2009 and the responsible thing to do is to facilitate the replacement as we did in Kabul in 2003.

Why does the Prime Minister not want to act responsibly and engage NATO right now?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I can say with great certainty that our allies appreciate the fine work that Canadian troops are doing in Kandahar and, to my knowledge, they are not seeking Canada to withdraw from its international responsibilities in any way.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is confirming that his opinion is that of his government and that our combat mission in Kandahar should not have a deadline.

Are we to understand that there is no deadline for the Kandahar mission, yes or no? The Prime Minister's claim that he would respect the February 2009 deadline was, once again, doublespeak.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we left it up to Parliament to decide, and Parliament decided to extend the mission to February 2009.

However, I can say with great certainty that the men and women in uniform for our allies no more appreciate the games of the opposition than the men and women in uniform for Canada.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, we cannot get development, diplomacy and defence to work together in Kandahar if we have muddle, misinformation and mismanagement in Ottawa.

We cannot win the hearts and minds of people in Afghanistan if all they see are troops, tanks and guns. Afghans need to see new wells, new roads and new schools.

Our military is looking for help from our development people but our development people are missing in action.

When will the Prime Minister get control of this mess, fire his Minister of National Defence and get some real coordination between diplomacy, defence and development?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent
Québec

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, I would like to report what is going on in Kandahar in terms of development. This year alone—and I went there again recently—we have spent $39 million, which is eight times more than the $5 million the former government spent in Kandahar.

We are making progress there. I visited the villages and communities. I met Afghan men and women. The Afghan people do appreciate our development efforts.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, the growing number of civilian deaths in Afghanistan has shaken the faith of the Afghan people in the mission and in the Karzai government. The Afghan senate is now urging that diplomatic ways to end the conflict be considered.

What discussions are currently underway between the Canadian government, our NATO allies and the Karzai government regarding an expanded diplomatic strategy?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, as the member opposite would know, Canada is playing a major role in terms of our continued contact within the Karzai government. We have representatives from our embassy, including our new ambassador, Arif Lalani, in constant contact in Kabul with government officials.

I can also inform the member that the decisions being made with respect to discussions with the Taliban are discussions that are made by Afghan officials. This is a democratically elected government under President Karzai. Those decisions are his to make and we are advised constantly of the discussions that do take place.

Gasoline Prices
Oral Questions

May 10th, 2007 / 2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, a study released today confirms our fears. Consumers in Quebec and Canada are paying too much for their gas. According to the study, the price per litre is 15¢ too high, and production costs cannot account for this. This unexplained difference raises the question of whether the oil companies are really competing with one another. Competition is a federal jurisdiction.

Will the Prime Minister shoulder his responsibilities and act on the Bloc Québécois motion passed on Tuesday in this House by amending the Competition Act to strengthen it and give the commissioner of competition and the Competition Bureau more power?

Gasoline Prices
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Beauce
Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to answer my opposition colleague, because he is being a bit inconsistent in this House today. He is calling for lower gas prices for Canadians and Quebeckers, yet the Bloc Québécois is supporting Bill C-288, which will drive up gas prices in Quebec by $1.50 to $2.00 a litre. That is the Bloc Québécois for you: inconsistent and incompetent.

Gasoline Prices
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, the problem is that prices are inflated because of the oil companies' excessive profits. On Tuesday, the minister confirmed that the refining margin was 22¢ a litre. That is three times the average margin early in this decade. The price at the pump comes under Quebec's jurisdiction, we know, but the refining margin is a question of competition, which is a federal jurisdiction.

Is the Prime Minister aware that by refusing to give the Competition Bureau more power, he is condoning a situation that is hurting consumers and the economy yet benefiting the oil companies?

Gasoline Prices
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Beauce
Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, if my friend wants to give the Competition Bureau more power, I invite him to vote for Bill C-41, which gives the Competition Bureau greater power to conduct investigations. The Bloc Québécois has been blocking Bill C-41 for some time.

That said, the Bloc Québécois should also know that gas prices are due to a shortage of inventory in the United States, a breakdown in the production chain. Oil inventories are being built up, and you will see that market forces will soon drive down gas prices again, if Bill C-288 is not adopted.

Gasoline Prices
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, we keep hearing that when the price of crude goes up on the international market, the price at the pump increases as well. In the past few days the price of crude has dropped, but the price at the pump has remained high.

Does the Minister of Industry have a new explanation for us today?