House of Commons Hansard #29 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

Grant Forest Products
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I am unaware of the facts that the hon. member is relying on, but what I can tell the member is that Georgia-Pacific has in fact committed to maintaining the current workforce, quite frankly because it recognizes the value of the workers at Grant Forest Products. It is sourcing all timber for the Canadian business from Canadian forests, utilizing Canadian-based logging contractors while promoting sustainable forestry practices. Those are a part of the agreement that Georgia-Pacific has agreed to as part of this decision.

Grant Forest Products
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, is this the start of a new practice? Are we going to actually have the government table the agreements of these foreign takeovers that have been made? Because it is about time that happened.

That is not what just happened here in the House. We had the minister quoting from the Georgia-Pacific press release, which I have here in my hand. That is what we have going on here.

Meanwhile, if the minister and his staff had bothered to take a look, they would find out that Georgia-Pacific is already firing workers contrary to this press release and contrary to any agreement.

When are we going to have a government that stands up for the people who built the wealth of this country?

Grant Forest Products
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, the reason that it is in the Georgia-Pacific press release is because I insisted that the terms and conditions for approving the investment be public. That is why it is in the press release.

If the hon. member wants to talk about saving jobs, perhaps he should review some of his party's policies which increase taxes, drive away business, drive away investment and make the country poor.

That is not our agenda.

Grant Forest Products
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, since the Investment Canada Act was passed, there have been 13,516 foreign takeovers in Canada. And how many have been refused by the various governments? Just one. The latest is the takeover of Grant Forest Products by Georgia-Pacific.

Will the Prime Minister guarantee that the terms and conditions will be met and that all employees who have been told they will lose their jobs will be kept on? Is he prepared to do that?

Grant Forest Products
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, if the hon. member has heard something other than what I said, he should share it with me so that we can settle this matter.

But I can tell the House that, in fact, this is an agreement that this company has agreed to. It agreed to it and that is what made this particular deal of net benefit to Canada, which is a test in the legislation.

We believe in more investment. We believe in more companies increasing the number of jobs in this country. That is why we act for the benefit of Canada.

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities said that he had met with Rahim Jaffer and personally received grant applications for three green infrastructure projects. The parliamentary secretary was delegated the authority to review these projects, not to decide which projects to fund.

If it is true that Mr. Jaffer's funding application was denied, was the minister informed? Did he make the decision? If not, who is managing this $1 billion program?

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, we have been very clear with respect to the issue the member raises. Serious allegations were brought forward to the Prime Minister's attention. He acted immediately, referring them to the relevant authorities. None of the allegations that were brought to the Prime Minister's attention had anything to do with government business.

With respect to the individual in question, no grants were either recommended or awarded.

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, ministers and their staff are legally obligated to report any time they are lobbied. In a huge loophole, apparently parliamentary secretaries are not.

So, the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities delegated authority to review projects to his PS, someone who does not report his interactions with lobbyists, not even a meeting with an unregistered lobbyist who is past chair of the Conservative caucus, husband of a cabinet minister, and was trolling for government cash.

Accountability is not the title of a bill that the government passed and ignored. It is the actions taken right here.

Will the government turn over these proposals? Will it come clean? Will it tell us who it was lobbied by and when?

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, if the member opposite has any allegations that he would like to make, I would encourage him to take them to the independent authority, but I doubt he will because any allegations that this member has ever raised have turned out to be totally incorrect and false.

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Valeriote Guelph, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, otherwise known as FedDev, needs to focus its limited resources on considering only projects of clear merit that will create long-terms jobs for Ontarians.

Could the minister in charge of FedDev confirm that his director of operations, Andrew House, met with representatives of Sustainable Ventures Inc. last fall on behalf of a number of its clients?

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Cambridge
Ontario

Conservative

Gary Goodyear Minister of State (Science and Technology) (Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario)

Mr. Speaker, ministers have an obligation to meet with Canadians. Mr. House did meet with the representatives, but they discussed the new fund, the southern Ontario development program. There were some projects talked about, but none of those projects received any funding.

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Valeriote Guelph, ON

Mr. Speaker, normally when people vying for funding from FedDev met with Andrew House or other members of the minister's staff, they registered those meetings with the lobbying commissioner as the law requires. After all, as a former Conservative candidate in both 2006 and 2008, Mr. House knew the accountability act well.

Could the minister confirm that Rahim Jaffer's business partner, Patrick Glémaud, presented four specific client proposals for funding to Andrew House on behalf of Sustainable Ventures Inc., and while he is at it, could he also explain why none of this was registered with the lobbying commissioner?

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Cambridge
Ontario

Conservative

Gary Goodyear Minister of State (Science and Technology) (Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario)

Mr. Speaker, first of all, the member is absolutely incorrect. It was three projects. None of those projects received any funding.

This government does not give funding to projects that do not qualify. That is exactly what the Liberals used to do. But if the lobbyist who is required to register the meeting did not register the meeting, I suggest the member report it to the lobbying commissioner as we have done.

Financial Institutions
Oral Questions

April 20th, 2010 / 2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Daniel Paillé Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, further to the Bloc's proposals, labour and environmental groups are now calling for a tax on international financial transactions. Similarly, a consensus is emerging among G20 nations to tax the gargantuan profits of banks so as to be able to respond to possible crises.

When will the Minister of Finance, who is going it alone, stop protecting his banking buddies?

Financial Institutions
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the world has just been through the most serious credit crisis in at least a generation. Fortunately, in this country, we have a very sound banking system. In fact, the World Economic Forum ranks our banking system as the strongest in the world.

No Canadian taxpayers' money had to be put into our banking system. This is not true in the United States, Great Britain, Germany, France and other places. Some of these other countries are looking at taxing their banks. We are looking at alternative forms of accomplishing the same goal. We will continue to work with our international partners.