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House of Commons Hansard #105 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was taiwan.

Topics

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I obviously cannot comment on that gentleman's recollection. The matter is in the public domain and I am sure the RCMP will do the job.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Bloc Roberval, QC

Mr. Speaker, we must be serious. A former associate of Groupaction, someone very close to the former minister, Alfonso Gagliano, all of a sudden becomes the seventh largest donor to the Liberal Party of Canada, and just after that, his brother signs a subcontract with the government even though the primary contract has not yet been awarded.

How can the government expect us to swallow such a story without calling for a public inquiry? That is the only way to find out what has been going on with these people who are so close to the Liberal Party.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I am not asking the hon. gentleman to swallow anything. In fact, as I have drawn to the attention of the House, the entire set of files with respect to sponsorships is under review by the Auditor General in a formal audit by her. Any of these matters that raise issues of a legal nature will be properly and thoroughly investigated by the RCMP, and it has demonstrated that it will follow the trail wherever it needs to go.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Rob Anders Canadian Alliance Calgary West, AB

Mr. Speaker, unbelievably the Minister of National Defence has stated that there is no need for more troops. Yet our inability to play a role around the globe shows just how wrong he is.

Canada does not have troops for post-war Iraq. Canada does not have troops for the Congo. Canada does not have troops for the Middle East peace force.

Will the minister stand up today and increase the number of troops?

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Markham Ontario

Liberal

John McCallum LiberalMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, I would not say it was unbelievable, but it is a fact that the hon. member has his facts wrong because it is also a fact that over the last year the Canadian Forces had a record recruiting season in which more than 10,000 new recruits joined the Canadian Forces. It is also a fact, as compared with a year go, that the strength of the army is more than 1,000 greater today.

The purpose of my earlier comments was to say that we were going to transform the army, and I am delighted to say that we have launched upon that process now.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Rob Anders Canadian Alliance Calgary West, AB

Mr. Speaker, that is a shame. There are uniforms and no training for those people.

The minister cannot hide the fact that Canada commits fewer troops internationally than Bangladesh, Ghana or even Uruguay. Canada ranks 32nd in the world. That is a disgrace.

Canadians are proud of the contributions our troops have made in the past. It is a shame the government is not willing to continue the proud tradition.

When we are consistently unable to provide troops to important missions, that means we do not have enough troops. Will the minister admit that his government has cut troop levels too low?

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Markham Ontario

Liberal

John McCallum LiberalMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, what I will say is that Winston Churchill once said that there were three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies and statistics. This figure of 33rd or something in terms of ranking of peacekeeping includes only blue hatted troops which gives a hugely distorted picture when the majority of our peacekeeping troops are in Bosnia and soon to be in Afghanistan.

Therefore the true ranking for Canada would certainly be in the top 10 and possibly the top 5 by the time our troops are deployed to Afghanistan in August.

Beef IndustryOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Louis Plamondon Bloc Bas-Richelieu—Nicolet—Bécancour, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Quebec government has implemented an exemplary tracking system that ensures it will not suffer Alberta's current problems with mad cow disease. Moreover, when this disease hit Britain, the entire beef industry in Europe was not subject to a ban. The minister should consider using this system.

The Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food should learn from what Alberta is going through and adopt the UPA's solution, which is to regionalize agricultural and safety practices, thereby limiting the ban's impact to local areas instead of endangering the Canadian beef industry as a whole.

Beef IndustryOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian cattle industry, as I said a few minutes ago, is not only integrated with the United States but it is integrated across our country.

Canadian genetics of cattle move from province to province across the country, and the programs and the system of surveillance based on food safety and science needs to be in place for the whole country.

Beef IndustryOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Louis Plamondon Bloc Bas-Richelieu—Nicolet—Bécancour, QC

Mr. Speaker, I think that the minister's answer is, in fact, the problem.

I asked him a clear question. Since Quebec's prevention system works extremely well, what is the federal government waiting for to implement it, insofar as possible within its own areas of jurisdiction, to reassure importing countries, so that Quebec producers can resume exports?

Beef IndustryOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member knows that Quebec is part of Canada, and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency is a federal inspection agency that does the inspection in Quebec, as it does in every province, for all meat that leaves Quebec for other provinces or other parts of the world.

We all benefit in Canada from the best food inspection system in the world, and it is there for all Canadians in all provinces.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Canadian Alliance Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, Benoît Renaud is the brother of Alain Renaud, a Liberal Party organizer and fundraiser. Benoît Renaud is not a rich man. In fact, he has declared bankruptcy twice. This did not stop him from contributing $63,000 to the Liberal Party of Canada. Where did he find the money? In the pockets of Canadian taxpayers. He received $68,000 for a contract that was not publicly tendered. He kept $5,000 for himself and made a cheque out to the Liberal Party for $63,000.

Why does the government accept commissions that were paid by Canadian taxpayers?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, as I have indicated in response to other questions today, this is a matter that is very much in the public domain. The RCMP is perfectly capable of investigating all things pertaining to these allegations and determining whether charges ought to be laid. That is its responsibility and I have every confidence it will discharge it.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Canadian Alliance Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, the story is incredible. Benôit Renaud is the brother of Alain Renaud, Liberal organizer and Liberal fundraiser. Benôit Renaud is not wealthy. In fact he has twice declared bankruptcy but his bankruptcy did not prevent him from donating over $63,000 to the Liberal Party. Where did he get the money? He got a $68,000 contract, kept $5,000 for himself and cut a $63,000 cheque to the government.

If the government really wants to clean up this mess, if it really wants to say that it is ending the corruption that has been scandalizing the government, will the government return the money? Yes or no. Will the money be returned?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, this is a matter, as I said before, that is properly the purview of the RCMP. That is what it is there for, to investigate matters of alleged wrongdoing. I am certain it will do whatever is appropriate in the circumstances.

The last thing that ought to be done is any political interference from the House.

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

R. John Efford Liberal Bonavista—Trinity—Conception, NL

Mr. Speaker, after extensive consultations with members of Parliament, provincial governments and aboriginal groups, the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans has announced a 29% increase in the total allowable catch for northern shrimp for 2003. Sharing of this increase follows a new access framework that resulted from the work of the independent panel on access criteria.

However, given the precarious state of other fish stocks in the Atlantic, could the minister inform the House about the state of northern shrimp stocks and the measures the government is implementing to ensure their health in the future?

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

West Nova Nova Scotia

Liberal

Robert Thibault LiberalMinister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my hon. colleague as well as all federal and provincial Liberal colleagues for the valuable advice they gave me in developing this northern shrimp management plan.

This year's quota of just over 152,000 tonnes is the result of a healthy and abundant resource where exploitation rates continue to be low. The quota is based on the principle of conservation, adjacency and equity. It also increases aboriginal participation in this fishery.

I was pleased to announce an industry-led science project that will continue to monitor the state of these stocks into the future.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Rick Borotsik Progressive Conservative Brandon—Souris, MB

Mr. Speaker, mad cow disease along with the new cases of SARS have delivered a one-two crippling punch to the Canadian economy. What Canadians needed was somebody to instill confidence, someone to demonstrate real leadership. Eating one steak does not cut it. People's livelihoods are threatened. The future of a $30 billion industry is in jeopardy.

My question is for the Prime Minister. What kind of compensation package, what kinds of support payments will be in place for producers, truckers, auction houses and packing plants?

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we have the problem of mad cow which has been dealt with by the Minister of Agriculture very effectively. Now there will be necessarily some consequences for some people and we will see what we can do.

However, as for his big attack on the economy of Canada, I would like to tell the hon. member that the G-8 has asked the Prime Minister of Canada to make a presentation on economic performance because Canada is the one country in the G-8 that is having the best economic performance of all the industrialized nations.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Gary Schellenberger Progressive Conservative Perth—Middlesex, ON

Mr. Speaker, the case of mad cow disease is having a devastating impact on beef farmers across Canada. Better Beef, a packing plant in Guelph, announced that it has just laid off 100 people.

Earlier a question was asked about providing an EI program for workers affected by mad cow disease similar to the one created for SARS. The government's response was to continue to monitor the situation. That is simply not good enough. Will the government provide real assistance? Yes or no.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Shefford Québec

Liberal

Diane St-Jacques LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, as I said earlier, we are taking the situation in the beef industry very seriously, and workers can count on the employment insurance plan if they lose their jobs.

Moreover, if the situation warrants, those in charge of employment insurance can sign a worksharing agreement. The Government of Canada is there for Canadian workers and is working very hard to find solutions to this difficult situation.

Automobile IndustryOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Brian Masse NDP Windsor West, ON

Mr. Speaker, on May 6 the Minister of Industry told the industry committee that the auto industry was his number one priority.

Since then, DaimlerChrysler announced that a proposed $1.6 billion plant will not be locating in Windsor. A good start. I cannot wait to see what happens with his second and third priorities. Even the Liberal member from St. Catharines noted the government should have acted more quickly.

Why is the Minister of Industry telling the auto industry to hit the road and go to the U.S. and Mexico? We need auto policy, not the road to nowhere.

Automobile IndustryOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we were at the table with the Government of Ontario and DaimlerChrysler. DaimlerChrysler announced last week that because of market conditions, the international economy and overcapacity in the auto sector this was not the time to build that plant in Windsor.

This is not an investment lost. It is, in my view, an opportunity postponed. We will have an opportunity again to talk with DaimlerChrysler when the market returns and we will do everything possible, as we have in the past.

We are delighted to see confirmed that DaimlerChrysler is continuing with over $2 billion of investment in its existing Canadian operations, a vote of confidence in Canada's economy.

Trucking IndustryOral Question Period

May 26th, 2003 / 2:45 p.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin NDP Windsor—St. Clair, ON

Mr. Speaker, for the same minister, let us try International Truck and Engine Corporation in Chatham. It is going down. It will lose 1,000 jobs. What do we hear from the Liberal member for Chatham—Kent Essex? A vitriolic attack on the workers, blaming them for it.

Does the minister accept that as the reason? Is that why that plant is going down? Is that why he is doing nothing?

Trucking IndustryOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, the Navistar plant in Chatham announced that it would be closing this July because of market conditions. I have corresponded with the plant and have told it that existing government programs, including Technology Partnerships Canada and infrastructure, are available to any company in Canada. I have made it aware of those programs and if those existing programs can respond to its needs then we will do everything we can to assist.

However the one thing we cannot do is provide cash subsidies to any industry in the country. That is not the way we do business and I think that is understood.