Mr. Speaker, the automotive industry is of critical importance to the Canadian economy. One component of that industry, the car dealers, are feeling threatened today. On average, 40 per cent of their business is based on leasing and this percentage is increasing every year.
Now the chartered banks want our approval for their entry into the lucrative car leasing business. I believe that if we permit the banks to enter we would risk jeopardizing the stability and success of the dealership network in Canada. In the long run, competition would be reduced and thousands of jobs might be lost.
I strongly urge the Secretary of State for Financial Institutions to help those who sell and lease cars by keeping the banks out of the automotive leasing business.