seconded by the member for Etobicoke Centre, moved for leave to introduce Bill C-571, An Act respecting corporate practices relating to the purchase of minerals from the Great Lakes Region of Africa.
He said: Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague from the Liberal Party for seconding the bill.
The illegal extraction of minerals from Africa's great lakes region has been directly financing the conflict in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo where millions have lost their lives and the human rights of millions more have been violated. We are connected to these conflicts through our use of minerals that finance these conflicts.
The UN Security Council has made recommendations to put an end to the trade of conflict minerals and this bill heeds the call to that action of the Security Council. It would create a due diligence mechanism for Canadian companies to ensure that they are not purchasing minerals that finance conflicts. The bill would also mandate the extractive sector's Corporate Social Responsibility Counsellor to report to the minister and Parliament as to which companies are not practising due diligence in purchasing these materials.
I invite the government to adopt this bill. Should we win a seat on the Security Council, this will be an area where Canada can play a significant leadership role in promoting global peace and security.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)