Mr. Speaker, on April 22, the plenary session of the Council of Europe adopted the highly regrettable recommendation that asbestos be banned.
Canada did not do enough to convince the European parliamentarians that crysotile asbestos can be used in a controlled manner. Canadian parliamentarians were, in fact, absent when the report was adopted on January 7, 1998 at the commission on social affairs, the family and health.
It is important that energetic efforts continue in order to allay the fears of the European parliamentarians concerning asbestos. This fibre, which is responsible for the economic health of an entire region of Quebec, is completely safe when used in accordance with the appropriate rules.
It is high time for the Canadian government to finally shoulder its responsibilities by filing an official complaint with the WTO.