House of Commons Hansard #12 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was post.

Topics

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, with respect to the last part of the question, that would be in the subsequent budget implementation acts following the one that is before the House now.

We have already brought in credit card regulations, as I am sure the member opposite knows, requiring clear and simple information, timely advance notice of rates and fee changes, and limiting any consumer business practices.

There is more to be done. It is outlined in the budget.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Glenn Thibeault Sudbury, ON

Mr. Speaker, Statistics Canada reported yesterday that household debt has skyrocketed again to a record new level. The household debt-to-income ratio is now around 150%. The federal deficit-to-income ratio, by comparison, is just 34%.

When will the government stop blaming Canadians and act to protect consumers from the predatory practices of credit card companies?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, as I understand the strange position, the contradictory position, taken by the member opposite, he is saying that the government ought to act to restrict credit at the same time that we ought to encourage consumer confidence, economic activity, job creation, and growth in the country. Those are contradictory goals.

We have said to Canadians very clearly that interest rates have only one way to go, and that is up, over time, and they ought to be prudent in their spending.

We have not seen any evidence of any imprudence, in terms of the Canadian housing market.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Tarik Brahmi Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday Statistics Canada confirmed the seriousness of the household debt crisis in Canada. On average, there is a $1.50 debt for every dollar earned. The list of experts sounding the alarm is growing longer: the Bank of Canada, Statistics Canada, CGA-Canada. Everyone criticizes the, quote, disastrous situation for indebted families.

How can the government justify its inaction in the face of this family debt crisis?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, interest rates have been low for some time, as I am sure the member opposite appreciates. That has meant some continued economic growth, moderate economic growth in Canada, which is welcome.

We anticipate, as the private sector economists do, that we will continue to have that moderate economic growth in Canada, which will lead us to balanced budgets.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Tarik Brahmi Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, the real problem is that the government has left Canadian families to their fate with their record debt levels. Families are no longer able to save for their future or their children’s future.

The indifference of the Conservatives is a threat to all our futures. Will the government finally protect consumers rather than the profits of the big banks?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian economy is in good shape. It is the best shape in the G7. The IMF says so.

The Conference Board of Canada says:

Canada’s economic fundamentals--fiscal policies, tax policy, monetary policy and management of the exchange rate--are arguably in the best shape in the developed world.

Canada is doing well.

Canada Revenue Agency
Oral Questions

June 21st, 2011 / 2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay Cardigan, PE

Mr. Speaker, last month the Federal Court ordered a judicial review in the case of over 750 fishermen involved in the Atlantic groundfish licence retirement program, who have been fighting for fairness before the court since 2006.

Fishermen in this program were not treated equally or fairly, and paid thousands of dollars more in taxes than they should have.

Will the Minister of National Revenue do the right thing and immediately settle with these fishermen who are being treated so unfairly?

Canada Revenue Agency
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Egmont
P.E.I.

Conservative

Gail Shea Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, I can inform the House and those fishers in Atlantic Canada affected directly by this court case that the government will not appeal this decision, and CRA will now reconsider the fishers' claim as requested by the Federal Court.

I would also remind the House that our government created the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, along with the Office of the Taxpayers' Ombudsman. We have the absolute expectation that CRA administers Canadian tax law in a manner that is fair and consistent for all Canadians.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Beauséjour, NB

Mr. Speaker, today, Hank Tepper, a New Brunswick farmer held in a Lebanese jail for three months, asked the Minister of Justice to charge him here in Canada for the offence alleged by Algerian authorities.

Every element of the alleged offence occurred in Canada. Why not lay the charge here, allow the Lebanese authorities to send him back to Canada, where he can clear his name and appear before a Canadian court with the protection of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms?

He is anxious to make full answer and defence to the charges against him. Why does the minister not do the right thing, charge him in Canada, as his lawyer asked today, have him come back here and let him clear his name in Canada?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary East
Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, this government is very concerned about this case and Mr. Tepper's family in Canada during this difficult time.

Consular officials in Lebanon have been actively providing consular assistance and support to Mr. Tepper and his family since his arrest, including regular visits to ensure his health and well-being.

We will continue to engage with senior Lebanese authorities to request due process and a timely and transparent handling of these facts.

Asbestos
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Pat Martin Winnipeg Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, Canada's position on asbestos is morally and ethically reprehensible, and even as we speak, teams of Department of Justice lawyers have been dispatched to Geneva to sabotage the Rotterdam Convention once again, the list of hazardous chemicals that require prior informed consent to trade.

Canada is already an international pariah for its policy on asbestos, for dumping it into the third world when we will not use it ourselves.

How can we in all good conscience block efforts to put labels on asbestos to warn its recipients to take health and safety protections against this class A carcinogen? What kind of country are we?

Asbestos
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Eglinton—Lawrence
Ontario

Conservative

Joe Oliver Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, for over 30 years the Government of Canada has promoted the safe and controlled use of chrysotile, both domestically and internationally.

Our position at Rotterdam is the same as it is in Canada. All scientific reviews clearly confirm that chrysotile fibres can be used safely under controlled situations.

Asbestos
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Hélène Laverdière Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, public health experts and occupational health experts the world over agree that there is no safe way to use asbestos.

Not a single reliable study in the world shows that asbestos can be used safely, as the Minister of Natural Resources contends.

Asbestos should be added to the Rotterdam Convention.

How can the minister continue to defend the indefensible?

Asbestos
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Eglinton—Lawrence
Ontario

Conservative

Joe Oliver Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, as I said, all the recent scientific reviews show that chrysotile can be used in a safe and controlled manner. The Chrysotile Institute is mandated by the federal government, the Government of Quebec and the chrysotile workers unions to support the attempts to promote the safe and controlled use of chrysotile in Canada and around the world.