House of Commons Hansard #84 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was workers.

Topics

Forestry Industry
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean
Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel Minister of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec)

Mr. Speaker, when we signed this agreement with the U.S., we brought back $4.5 billion to Canada and redistributed the entire amount to the forestry industry. Countervailing duties have fallen from 30% on average to less than 15%. We did our job.

Unfortunately the pulp and paper industry is now in crisis. In 2009 alone, AbitibiBowater's share in the paper market declined by 31% and, since 2000, sales of newsprint have dropped by 42%.

Unfortunately, this is about markets. However, we will continue to support the forestry industry and to do our job.

Nortel
Oral Questions

September 18th, 2009 / 11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, as you know, the second auction of Nortel assets earlier this week dealt with its Enterprise business and the winning bid from a U.S. firm was for about $1 billion Canadian.

I was informed on Wednesday that the winner had notified the Canadian government that it was fully aware its purchase was subject to review under the Investment Canada Act because of its size and that it was ready for it. I am glad that that U.S. company is fully aware of how it works.

I would like to ask the minister one more time why he does not realize how it works.

Nortel
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I am not sure what the hon. member is suggesting. Is he suggesting that this government has already taken a position that the particular transaction he mentioned is not reviewable? If he is under that misapprehension, it is indeed a misapprehension.

Nortel
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, I was referring to the minister's decision with respect to the wireless assets of Nortel.

On Wednesday, the Minister of Industry dismissed the possibility of reviewing whether the sale of Nortel's wireless assets was in Canada's best interests. Even though the price paid was well above $1 billion Canadian, he maintained that the actual value was no more than $182 million, and that it would therefore not be necessary to review the transaction.

Even though the stakes are high and it would only be prudent, the minister simply said no.

Is this a good way to protect Canadian interests?

Nortel
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I would be happy to go through this again.

There is a law in this country and it is called the Investment Canada Act. The law has a threshold for review. The threshold for review is $312 million based on the assets of the company. This particular transaction was $182.5 million underneath the threshold. Therefore, it is not reviewable, unless the Liberals want to have different laws for different transactions. If that is their idea of an economic policy, it stinks.

Immigration
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Thierry St-Cyr Jeanne-Le Ber, QC

Mr. Speaker, facts revealed on Radio-Canada's Enquête program shed rather troubling light on the government's mismanagement of the immigration file and highlight the minister's blatant lack of transparency on this issue. He claims to be aware of the situation, but he is not doing anything about it.

Given yesterday's revelations, will the minister act swiftly to implement visitor exit controls, a solution that the Bloc Québécois proposed back in 2008?

Immigration
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

St. Catharines
Ontario

Conservative

Rick Dykstra Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, it is a fact that our government takes a zero tolerance approach to immigration fraud. We are very concerned about the proliferation of bogus immigration consultants offering advice on or abuse of our system. Mr. Speaker, you can bet your bottom dollar that we are going to continue working toward that end.

Immigration
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Thierry St-Cyr Jeanne-Le Ber, QC

Mr. Speaker, the same program, which the parliamentary secretary should have watched yesterday, featured three secretly filmed consultants who acknowledged the existence of a fraudulent strategy to get around immigration laws.

Has the government initiated investigations? Will it press charges against these three people?

Immigration
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, obviously such situations are unacceptable. The department is very aware of these cases. As my colleague knows, investigations are under way. We cannot comment on an ongoing investigation. This is a case by case issue. People can be sure that the minister is dealing with this type of thing. It is unacceptable. Unscrupulous consultants will be punished to the full extent of the law. We will do everything in our power to address these unfortunate situations.

Immigration
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Ève-Mary Thaï Thi Lac Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

Mr. Speaker, the CBC has revealed an extensive Canadian citizenship fraud scheme in Montreal. The report uncovered an industry of consultants specialized in creating fictional lives in order to help immigrants meet the legal residency requirements.

The Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism said that he is aware of the fraud. Can he tell us whether this scheme has targeted regions outside Quebec?

Immigration
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

St. Catharines
Ontario

Conservative

Rick Dykstra Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, the department is fully aware of the recent media report of the activities of certain unscrupulous immigration consultants. To avoid jeopardizing ongoing investigations, I cannot speak to the specifics of any case. I can say again, clearly, we have zero tolerance on this side of the House for immigration fraud.

Immigration
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Ève-Mary Thaï Thi Lac Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

Mr. Speaker, the CBC report revealed some shortcomings in the Lebanese government's administrative practices. By choosing not to stamp the passport directly upon arrival, the Lebanese authorities are counteracting the controls we have in place here.

The government is clearly in over its head here. Has it at least contacted the Lebanese authorities to put an end to this practice?

Immigration
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, this demagoguery needs to stop. My colleagues know very well—and if they do not know, we will repeat it—that this type of fraud is handled on a case-by-case basis. The Canada Border Services Agency is involved, as is the RCMP. These situations are taken very seriously. The government is taking action, and does not need any lectures from the Bloc on how to enforce the law.

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Liberal

Scott Brison Kings—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister declared victory over buy America in February, and exports to the U.S. are now down over 35%.

The Prime Minister did nothing to stop the new passport rule at the U.S. border, and same day travel across our border is now down 29%. Businesses and border towns are devastated.

How can Canadians trust the Prime Minister to defend our interests in the U.S., a Prime Minister who has been so wrong so many times, a Prime Minister who has failed to get any meaningful results against buy America protectionism in Washington?

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

South Shore—St. Margaret's
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Gerald Keddy Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister just had a very successful visit to Washington which included a face-to-face meeting with President Obama. They discussed Canadian proposals for open and freer trade. He also met with key congressional members. That was another very successful meeting. Last night he spoke to the Canadian American Business Council in New York.

We are continuing to represent Canada's interests on the world stage, and with Americans.