Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for his question.
Obviously in Newfoundland we do not have the same degree of co-operatives as there are in western Canada. We do have several very successful fishing co-ops, one being Fogo Island co-op which has been in existence for many years and has been a model for many of the smaller co-ops in Newfoundland and Labrador.
We have the Newfoundland Teachers Credit Union of which I was a member for many of my earlier years when I was teaching. It is a very successful credit union and it gives excellent services to the people of St. John's West and to Newfoundland and Labrador.
One of the things we might have missed in Newfoundland was a greater degree of co-operation and the co-operatives which could have resulted from that. I mentioned the Petty Harbour co-op. The community was catching lots of fish in the early 80s, but had no means to sell that fish, no means to process it. Through the leadership of people like Mike Hearn and Tom Best in that community they ran a pretty successful co-op for a period of time, but then ran into fishery problems.
Co-operatives in Newfoundland could play a much greater role. One of the greatest problems we have in Newfoundland is finding access to capital for small business. The Canadian banking establishment does not aggressively get involved in the Newfoundland business community. Maybe co-operatives could play an active role there as well. I hope to see it grow over the years.