House of Commons Hansard #19 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was agreements.

Topics

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, what the Bloc leader fails to say is that in the 2010 budget, we closed nearly 10 tax loopholes to ensure tax fairness for all Canadians.

We are working actively with our international partners to put an end to all tax havens, in particular by improving our agreements to share tax information with other countries and by devoting more of Revenue Canada’s resources to tax audits. So the Bloc really should support the budget.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, I just told him they are opening a new tax loophole and he has nothing to say in response.

I will give him another example. He told us the government is dealing with tax havens. At the same time, he wants to negotiate a free trade deal with Panama, which appears on the list of tax havens published by the OECD. How can they ask their fellow citizens to tighten their belts and at the same time sign a deal with a country that is on the OECD list of tax havens? I would like an answer this time.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, he has his answer, namely, ten tax loopholes were closed. Instead of opposing the budget, he should stand and vote in favour of it.

The 2010 budget also makes changes that will enable Canadian companies to attract foreign capital. This will help us improve our productivity and face the international competition. Such measures are obviously of no interest, though, to the Bloc Québécois.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Daniel Paillé Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, when it is time to grab money from the working class, the government does not waste any time. However, when it is time to make the rich pay, it drags its feet.

The Bloc Québécois has proposed and is still asking that the government put an end to tax evasion and tax havens, that it take away the gifts made to oil companies, and that it impose a surtax on those whose annual taxable income exceeds $150,000.

Just why does the government not ask these privileged people to do their share in the fight against the deficit?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, the situation is clear to me: 10 tax loopholes were eliminated by our government. I am saying it the way it should be said. I hope that this time they will understand. Ten tax loopholes were eliminated by our government.

The members across the way should stop opposing the budget. They should rise and support it. Then, they will see concrete results.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Daniel Paillé Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is the fourth answer to the same question.

The Quebec government is going to table its budget this week, but the federal government refuses to pay it its due. There are $8 billion that are dormant here in Ottawa, including $800 million for post-secondary education, $2.2 billion for harmonizing the sales tax, and $1 billion for capping equalization payments.

What is the Government of Canada waiting for to pay its debt to the Quebec government?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, we had one of the worst recessions since the 1930s. We were the last ones to enter into that recession and we will come out of it stronger. We never offloaded the deficit onto the provinces and municipalities.

We maintained our social and health transfers. Moreover, before that, we corrected the fiscal imbalance. As we can see, the economic action plan is working. Last Friday, I was in Stanstead with the Prime Minister, where we paid tribute to Pat Burns. An arena is being built there to help young people and to promote amateur sport.

This is action, not just empty rhetoric.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, after bringing in the biggest corporate tax cuts in Canadian history, the Liberals have finally realized their mistake. They are now supporting the New Democratic Party call for a freeze on the corporate tax cuts on the big banks and oil companies. Sure, it is another Liberal flip-flop, but what Canadians really want to know is when the current government will understand that this is a reckless form of spending that is driving us further into debt and is increasing the deficit.

When will the government join the emerging consensus that these reckless corporate tax cuts are not the way to go and it must stop them?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, my friend the leader of the New Democratic Party has made quite the conversion. It was not 15 months ago that he signed a coalition agreement to support each and every one of these tax cuts. He was prepared to serve in a government that saw jobs, hope and opportunity as the primary goals, and to do everything we can to ensure more investment in Canada, that we have a Canadian advantage that will allow jobs to come back to this great country. We believe that taxing investment, we believe that excessively taxing those who create jobs hurts the economy and leads to a lower standard of living. That is why we are moving forward with an aggressive job creation agenda.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, half the world now agrees with the Parliamentary Budget Officer. Even the minions of the leaders on Bay Street are saying that these across-the-board corporate tax cuts are not the way to go, that they are not efficient, they are not effective, they do not create jobs, they do not create investment. All they do is leave our finances in a more difficult position. The Governor of the Bank of Canada has come out with the same position.

When will the Conservatives take off their ideological blinders and recognize that these corporate tax cuts are reckless and they should be stopped?

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal plan is to raise taxes on job creators, on Canadian business, on Canadian consumers, with the GST. It is very clear the Liberal Party wants to raise taxes on everything.

We strongly support competitive tax rates. We want Canada to be a bright light when it comes to new investment, so that there are more jobs, so that there is more opportunity. That is why this government's economic plan is working.

We have a fragile recovery setting in, and the worst thing that we could do would be to raise taxes, as the leader of the Liberal Party has argued.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, what the Prime Minister does is borrow money to cut taxes for big businesses. Even these people are getting uncomfortable. They are saying enough is enough.

Why is the Prime Minister stubbornly sticking with his choices? Why increase employment taxes by $19 billion, while reducing corporate taxes by $60 billion? This does not make any sense.

Taxation
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear. It looks like the coalition that was going to see the Liberal leader be prime minister now has a new face. It is the face of the leader of the New Democratic Party, who now seems to be the puppeteer for the Liberal Party.

Let us be very clear. Let me quote another good senior economist:

I am very sympathetic to a lower corporate tax rate. I think it would get a big bang for the buck, in terms of stimulating growth and productivity and all of those good things.

If only the Liberal leader would have let the member for Markham—Unionville speak at his thinking, spending, taxing conference, maybe there would have been better policy.

Human Resources and Skills Development
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Siobhan Coady St. John's South—Mount Pearl, NL

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's Office recently warned political staff to stop meddling in access to information requests.

Two weeks later, the office of the Minister of Human Resources obstructed an information request about a $5 million advertising campaign during the Olympics. The media had a simple question. Department officials had the answer. The minister's office intervened and hid the truth.

Is the minister embarrassed by the waste of taxpayers' money, or does she not believe that Canadians deserve the truth?

Human Resources and Skills Development
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, the reporter was provided with the information that he requested once the campaign was complete and all the costs were in and accurate.

We do strive always to be open and transparent. We certainly are doing our processes to ensure that Canadians do receive the information they ask for in a timely way and that that information is both accurate and complete. We will be taking a look at this example and taking it into consideration to see how we can improve our processes in the future.