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House of Commons Hansard #112 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was banks.

Topics

Employment InsuranceOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski-Neigette-Et-La Mitis, QC

Mr. Speaker, allow me to take 30 seconds to say thank you. My appearance may have changed slightly, but my temperament has not.

In Dégelis, the Bowater sawmill is calling back workers for 11 weeks because it does not want the wood in its yard to go to waste. Eleven weeks is 440 hours of work.

With the transitional measures for employment insurance in eastern Quebec and the North Shore soon coming to an end, the workers in Dégelis are concerned they will not qualify for employment insurance.

What tangible measures does the Minister of Human Resources Development intend to put forward to deal with the reality of the regions affected by the softwood lumber crisis?

Employment InsuranceOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Moncton—Riverview—Dieppe New Brunswick

Liberal

Claudette Bradshaw LiberalMinister of Labour

As you know, Mr. Speaker, employment insurance is there for the employees. We will continue to work with the ministers to ensure that these individuals are very well protected.

Employment InsuranceOral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski-Neigette-Et-La Mitis, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government knows that several regions are going through a very difficult time because of the softwood lumber crisis.

What is the minister waiting for to relax the EI rules and provide income assistance, as the government did for the SARS crisis in Toronto and the fisheries crisis in the eastern provinces, to prevent a socio-economic tragedy in these regions?

Employment InsuranceOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Moncton—Riverview—Dieppe New Brunswick

Liberal

Claudette Bradshaw LiberalMinister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, the HRDC minister is working very closely with other ministers. As hon. members know, we have put money into economic development to deal with the softwood lumber issue.

The Secretary of State referred earlier to developments in Quebec and elsewhere. We will continue to work in partnership to ensure that employees are very well protected.

TerrorismOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, according to a November 2002 RCMP report, 8,000 Tamil Tigers involved in extortion, intimidation, and the smuggling of migrants are operating in Toronto. CSIS estimates that the Tamil Tigers raise millions of dollars each year to help fund and purchase weapons to carry on their war back home.

How much more evidence does the Solicitor General need before he adds the Tamil Tigers to Canada's list of terrorist entities?

TerrorismOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Malpeque P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, terrorist activity is a global problem and there are no boundaries to terrorist activities. The member should know that in November 2001 LTTE was listed under the United Nations suppression of terrorism regulations and its assets can be frozen and seized.

TerrorismOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, they are still not added to Canada's list of entities. Perhaps the problem is that this is the same group that the former finance minister helped support with his attendance at one of their fundraisers.

Canadian passports are a hot commodity in Sri Lanka. They are a hot commodity for profiteers who are sending illegal immigrants to Canada. When will the Solicitor General take seriously the claims of Sri Lanka and put a stop to the dangerous activities--

TerrorismOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. Solicitor General.

TerrorismOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Malpeque P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, the government takes terrorism, terrorist issues and terrorist groups very seriously. In fact, the hon. member was present in the House this morning when I tabled the security intelligence report and made a statement on security. If he had been listening clearly to that report he would understand the amount of effort that Canada is making both within Canada and around the world to cut the financing of terrorist groups and to address the terrorism issue.

St. Lawrence WaterwayOral Question Period

June 5th, 2003 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Mario Laframboise Bloc Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, QC

Mr. Speaker, while we are celebrating World Environment Day today, the backers of the member for LaSalle--Émard are still working to do away with compulsory pilotage on the St. Lawrence, thus making major savings possible for shipping companies, but at the same time increasing the risk of an environmental disaster for the river ecosystem between Les Escoumins and Quebec City.

The minister is preparing to eliminate the compulsory use of pilots in the Les Escoumins-Quebec City section, claiming that he is relying on new technology. Does he not understand that the best technology in the world cannot ever take the place of specialized pilots who have to make decisions in response to specific situations?

St. Lawrence WaterwayOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Don Valley East Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I answered this yesterday. My colleague's statement is completely erroneous.

St. Lawrence WaterwayOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Mario Laframboise Bloc Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister needs to understand that elimination of pilots makes the river vulnerable, and there is always the possibility of disasters such as those we see too often reported in the international news.

Environmentally speaking, is the Minister of Transport not taking a huge risk by trying to please the friends of the member for LaSalle--Émard, his future boss?

St. Lawrence WaterwayOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Don Valley East Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, if the hon. member has such an interest in the St. Lawrence pilots, I suggest that he raise the question at the Standing Committee on Transport. I will be appearing before the committee next Monday.

The EconomyOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Charlie Penson Canadian Alliance Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, in his February budget the Minister of Finance forecasted economic growth of 3.2%. However, since that time the Canadian economy has been hit by a series of shocks: SARS, the BSE outbreak, closing of the cod fishery, the ongoing softwood lumber dispute, and an appreciating Canadian dollar.

With all these economic disturbances, will the Minister of Finance introduce a fiscal and economic update that scales down government spending to bring it in line with the new realities of the economy?

The EconomyOral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, that is a good question. I do not intend to bring in a fiscal or economic update at this point in time. I do expect that within the next few weeks, as we get renewed projections from the private sector forecasters upon whom we rely on to determine the expectation of growth in the Canadian economy, I will be able to be more specific about what I expect the impact to be on growth this year. The effect on our fiscal position is somewhat different because it is based on different issues.

The EconomyOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Charlie Penson Canadian Alliance Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, the 15% appreciation in the Canadian dollar since the beginning of the year should have been a good news story for Canadians, however the impact is driving and pinching our exporters because there has been no corresponding decrease in cost of production.

Will the minister bring in lower taxes for the business sector in order to offset the competitive disadvantage faced by our exporters?

The EconomyOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the implementation of the 2002 tax cut package of $100 billion continues. That was one of the starting points in this year's budget. In addition, the budget introduced a number of reductions of taxes and charges, including the employment insurance premiums for next year, the elimination of the federal capital tax, and the increase in the small business deduction for small businesses.

Those are all elements that were in the budget. They seem to have foreseen the--

The EconomyOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Erie--Lincoln.

Firearms RegistryOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

John Maloney Liberal Erie—Lincoln, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadians are concerned upon learning that during a period of high volume last December, the information inputted into the gun registry system may have been lost. Can the Solicitor General assure gun owners who attempted to register during this time period that their information is in the system? What about those gun owners who may have been unable to register?

Firearms RegistryOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Malpeque P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, it is in fact the case that people were unable to log into the system last December, but I want to clear up some confusion around the issue. No vital information was lost.

We want to ensure that those who tried to log onto the system in December and did not get logged on are not under the perception that they did get through. They can call the 1-800 number or the Internet line, which is now working. We want these people to have the opportunity to register and obey the laws of the land.

Softwood LumberOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Gerald Keddy Progressive Conservative South Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Minister for International Trade was unable to name a single province that supports his softwood lumber proposal. The government claims it has consulted with the provincial and industry authorities, but the facts suggest otherwise. They suggest the government ignored the interests of entire regions, regions like Atlantic Canada.

If the Minister for International Trade cannot name a single province that supports this proposal, why will he not withdraw it from the table?

Softwood LumberOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Dufferin—Peel—Wellington—Grey Ontario

Liberal

Murray Calder LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, not only do we believe that Atlantic Canada, but all Canadians, should be exempt from the punitive measures applied by the United States.

In this case Atlantic Canada was not successful in achieving exemption from anti-dumping measures. In their meeting with the ministers two weeks ago representatives told him that they preferred a negotiated settlement with the ongoing litigation provided that their interests were met and that the anti-dumping petition would be withdrawn.

Softwood LumberOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Gerald Keddy Progressive Conservative South Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, on May 21 the government assured the Maritime Lumber Bureau that Atlantic Canada's duty exemption on softwood lumber would stand. On May 22 the Minister for International Trade removed Atlantic Canada's exemption and proposed a quota regime. Yesterday the Maritime Lumber Bureau resolved to take legal action against the government. Today the minister is meeting with the Maritime Lumber Bureau.

Will he reverse his decision to betray the softwood lumber industry in Atlantic Canada?

Softwood LumberOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Dufferin—Peel—Wellington—Grey Ontario

Liberal

Murray Calder LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, I will just take and reinforce what I have already said to the member. We believe that not only Atlantic Canada, but all of Canada should be exempt from the punitive measures being applied by the U.S.

Urban AffairsOral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies NDP Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the finance minister.

The environment minister says he wants funding for public transit; so do cities, the environmentalists and indeed the NDP. We have been very clear on that. The finance minister clearly knows this because his office called for a copy of Jack Layton's speech to a municipal conference last week, presumably so he could bone up before his own speech.

Why is the finance minster, who boasts of his surplus, the only one who refuses dedicated transit funds to help our cities and the environment?