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House of Commons Hansard #4 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was leader.

Topics

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Canadian Alliance

Stockwell Day Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we will read back and forth because it says based on budget 2000 and on the October update. That is what it is based on.

Since then the reports have come out showing 0.1% growth in November. Forty-three per cent of manufacturers in Canada, not in the International Monetary Fund, now say that they will be reducing for this next quarter.

The Prime Minister does not care. He does not know. I will ask the Minister of Industry, one of his possible successors, if he is concerned about this possible direction.

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Industry and the whole government, allow me to quote again from the IMF report, which as I mentioned was only finalized some 10 days ago. It reads:

The strong policy framework in place has positioned the real and financial economy (in Canada) to cope with any new major economic shock, including a slowdown in U.S. growth. The Canadian authorities are to be highly commended for their policy accomplishments.

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

Order, please. I know that both the questions and answers are generating a lot of enthusiasm, but I caution hon. members that we have a limit on question period time and I think we should move more quickly.

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Deborah Grey Canadian Alliance Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, it looks like gentlemen start your engines, the race is on. It is really not that complicated. Things did look better in the fall when the government brought forward its plan. It brought forward a financial plan based on certain assumptions.

Those assumptions have now changed. The government should be tabling a new budget now, not down the road when things get worse. It is a question of prudence. I am sure the government understands that. What part of prudence is the Prime Minister objecting to?

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, there is no doubt—

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Liberal Saint-Maurice, QC

Talk about pension reform.

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Martin Liberal LaSalle—Émard, QC

Yes, I guess I could do that. The Canadian government in its projections has been prudent and that is why Canada will be able to weather the storm.

I congratulate the member opposite for her prudence in saving up for her pension.

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

The Chair would appreciate more co-operation, given the time element.

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Deborah Grey Canadian Alliance Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, if only I could plan for pension reform by registering my ships off country, it would be a great thing.

Surely the government knows that this was based on budget 2000 and the mini-budget that was purely for election purposes in October. That is what it was based on.

The economy grew in Canada by 0.1%. Almost half of Canadian manufacturers are scaling back. This is not happy news. These are warning signs in Canada but the government refuses to act.

Why will the Prime Minister not simply reassure Canadian families and working people and table a budget soon?

Speech From The ThroneOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the financial plan indicated very well that we were very prudent to have a mini-budget in October so that the tax cuts would be in place in Canada for January 1, 2001.

Of course the Minister of Finance, myself and all the government are watching the situation very closely, but all indications are that the Canadian economy will outperform any competitors in the OECD next year because we were prudent to have a budget in October and of course an election in November.

Lumber IndustryOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, as we know, the Minister for International Trade met with representatives of the Canadian Alliance on the subject of lumber trade.

For many years now, the Quebec forest industry has paid a heavy price for the subsidies paid in British Columbia. This situation cannot continue as far as Quebec is concerned.

Does the minister agree with all the stakeholders attending this meeting, including those from British Columbia, who want a return to the full application of the free trade agreement?

Lumber IndustryOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew LiberalMinister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, I am delighted by the question put by the leader of the Bloc Quebecois on the subject of lumber, an extremely important issue.

I can assure you that I met with a number of representatives of the provinces, including Quebec. I also met industry representatives.

I can assure members that we are all working together and that a broad consensus is forming across the country in favour of free trade in lumber. Therefore, we are working closely with the industry across the country, with each of the provinces. There is no question of returning to the agreement we had in recent years.

Lumber IndustryOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, can the minister tell us whether the government has a strategy for negotiations with the American government to ensure the States does not apply any sanctions immediately after the return to the free trade agreement, which would considerably harm the entire lumber industry?

Lumber IndustryOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew LiberalMinister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, at the moment we are not negotiating with the American government, but are having a fruitful and in depth dialogue.

As we know, no new American trade representative has been confirmed in Washington yet. This should happen imminently.

We have already had discussions and we are awaiting this official's confirmation. I can assure the House that all measures have been taken to ensure this dialogue is successful and leads to healthy trade relations, because the Americans need the Canadian industry's lumber.

Lumber IndustryOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, thousands of jobs and hundreds of companies in the softwood lumber industry are hard hit by the quotas which have been unfairly imposed on Quebec, while subsidies were being handed out by the Government of British Columbia. Quebec, however, does not offer such subsidies and should not have to suffer as a result.

In the event of American sanctions, will the Minister for International Trade undertake to compensate Canadian and Quebec producers financially and to provide them with legal support before the NAFTA dispute panel?

Lumber IndustryOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew LiberalMinister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, I would like to begin by congratulating the member for Joliette on his election to the House of Commons, and on the confidence his leader has shown in him by appointing him to the important position of international trade critic.

I would assure the member that if there is one industry among those covered by the agreement that has experienced significant growth, it is the one in Quebec, whose share of the American market has now grown to 25%, compared to 20% to 21% a few years ago.

Lumber IndustryOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would point out to the minister that in the case of New Brunswick, which does not come under the agreement, growth was much greater.

But, whatever the outcome of the negotiations now under way with the Americans, can the Minister for International Trade guarantee that Quebec lumber producers will never again have to suffer because of subsidies given to other producers, such as those in British Columbia, as has too long been the case?

Lumber IndustryOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew LiberalMinister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, the member for Joliette should think very carefully before accusing other provinces of engaging in practices the Canadian government does not believe they are engaged in.

I think that, throughout Canada, we have made considerable progress with respect to trade practices. I think that the Government of British Columbia is taking its responsibilities seriously. I also think that we should all stand together, that Canada's practice of having rights and Crown lands is our way of doing things.

We will continue to have a Canadian way of doing things, and, if that does not suit the United States, we are still going to insist on the right to manage our natural resources as we see fit in our country, in terms of commercial rights.

TradeOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister.

Yesterday the Prime Minister said he was unaware of any problems with the FTAA. Claiming that Canada's position is totally transparent, the government referred us to the website.

Guess what the website says, Mr. Speaker: Canada has made no submissions to the negotiating group on services, yet a secret report of that same group chaired by Canada recommends throwing all public services, including health and education, into the free marketplace. If that is not Canada's position then what is?

TradeOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, as I said earlier, there is a rumour that we do not want to protect, for example, the five conditions of medicare in this negotiation. It is a rumour started by people in the hon. member's party or by its friends, but it is not true at all.

TradeOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, if the Prime Minister cannot be open with Canadians will he at least pledge to be direct with the Americans?

Next week the Prime Minister goes to the U.S. Will he promise the House that he will look President Bush straight in the eye and state unequivocally that Canada's health care, education and water resources will not be on the table at the Quebec summit on the FTAA?

TradeOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we have been very clear on that for many years and it has been agreed that is the position of Canada.

Business Development Bank Of CanadaOral Question Period

February 1st, 2001 / 2:30 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Joe Clark Progressive Conservative Calgary Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Prime Minister concerning a senior official of a crown corporation.

Does the Prime Minister know and can he tell the House if the senior vice-president for corporate affairs at the Business Development Bank, a Mr. Jean Carle, played an active role in the support of a political party during the campaign for the November 27 election?