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House of Commons Hansard #38 of the 37th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was land.

Topics

Westbank First Nation Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Nay.

Westbank First Nation Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:15 p.m.

The Speaker

In my opinion the yeas have it.

And more than five members having risen:

Westbank First Nation Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:15 p.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, if you were to seek it, I believe you would find unanimous consent that members who have voted on the previous motion be recorded as having voted on the motion now before the House, with Liberal members voting yes, except those who indicate otherwise.

I wish to point out that the member for Willowdale is absent.

Westbank First Nation Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:15 p.m.

The Speaker

Is there unanimous consent to proceed in this way?

Westbank First Nation Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Westbank First Nation Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

No.

(The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

Westbank First Nation Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

The Speaker

I declare the motion carried.

(Motion agreed to)

The House resumed consideration of the motion that Bill C-31, an act to give effect to a land claims and self-government agreement among the Tlicho, the Government of the Northwest Territories and the Government of Canada, to make related amendments to the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act and to make consequential amendments to other acts, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

The Speaker

The House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on the motion at the second reading stage of Bill C-31.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, if you were to seek it, I believe you would find unanimous consent that members who have voted on the previous motion be recorded as having voted on the motion now before the House, with Liberal members voting yes, except those who indicate otherwise.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

The Speaker

Is there unanimous consent to proceed in this fashion?

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Dale Johnston Canadian Alliance Wetaskiwin, AB

Mr. Speaker, Conservative members present here tonight will be voting no on the motion.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-De- Beaupré—Île-D'Orléans, QC

Mr. Speaker, the members of the Bloc Quebecois will vote in favour of this motion.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin NDP Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, members of the NDP will be voting yes to the motion.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

John Herron Progressive Conservative Fundy Royal, NB

Post Progressive Conservatives will support the motion, Sir.

(The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government ActGovernment Orders

6:25 p.m.

The Speaker

I declare the motion carried. Accordingly, the bill stands referred to the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs, Northern Development and Natural Resources.

(Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)

The House resumed from April 20 consideration of the motion.

The Armenian PeoplePrivate Members' Business

April 21st, 2004 / 6:30 p.m.

The Speaker

The House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on Motion No. 380 under private members' business.

(The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

The Armenian PeoplePrivate Members' Business

6:40 p.m.

The Speaker

I declare the motion carried.

The Armenian PeoplePrivate Members' Business

6:40 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Bellechasse—Etchemins—Montmagny—L'Islet is not present to move his private member's motion on the Academy of Science pursuant to the notice published in today's Notice Paper. Accordingly, the order is dropped from the Order Paper.

A motion to adjourn the House under Standing Order 38 deemed to have been moved.

The Armenian PeopleAdjournment Proceedings

6:40 p.m.

Bloc

Serge Cardin Bloc Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, the trucking industry is suffering quite a bit from the often unjustified increases in the price of gasoline that also put an unnecessary strain on consumers' budgets. We know that the government is doing very little about the negative effects of increased gasoline prices.

On March 23, 2004, I asked the minister about this. I asked him whether he would agree to create a petroleum monitoring agency, as recommended by the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology. To my surprise, the minister said that prices should be and are determined on the market price.

In the meantime, the government has officially announced that it rejects the request by the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology to create a petroleum monitoring agency in order to protect consumers from abuses by the oil companies.

In the government's response there are two important factors that need to be taken into consideration: of course there are market forces, but there is also the very important factor of the democratic deficit within the decision presented by the government.

Regarding market forces, the government says it must not get involved in the process. However, as hon. members may know, since 1970, through subsidies or indirect benefits to the oil industry, the government has invested $66 billion. If that is not interfering in market forces, then I do not know what is. During that same time, only $326 million was invested in clean energy. The government recently gave the oil and gas industries $250 million. Yet, we all know full well that the oil companies have not stopped making huge profits.

There should also be serious concern about management in the petroleum industry and about the GST and other taxes that are collected. No one will forget the 1.5¢ in GST added to the price of gasoline. That is yet another example of indirect interference in market forces. Nor will we forget that the government, on the eve of the election in 2000, gave everyone $125. Thus we see that the government has a serious management problem. We know very well that it was not just people who bought gasoline who received that money. There were also people who did not really need it.

We also know that when the committee passed this recommendation, all the Liberal MPs were in favour. The Prime Minister often says that he wants to eliminate the democratic deficit and yet he does not listen to his own members.

Therefore, concerning the management of the petroleum industry and the government's involvement, what I am really asking the minister this evening is why he refused to create this petroleum monitoring agency. I repeat; it was a one-shot request. It could have enabled the government to find out how petroleum prices are managed.

The Armenian PeopleAdjournment Proceedings

6:45 p.m.

Chicoutimi—Le Fjord Québec

Liberal

André Harvey LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague. Allow me to thank the standing committee for considering a matter that concerns many people.

As a result of its research, the committee recommended that the federal government create an independent petroleum monitoring agency responsible for collecting and providing information on gasoline pricing and tabling an annual report.

The government, particularly this department in cooperation with other departments, considered the committee's recommendation. The government believes nonetheless that its current activities, combined with research about the situation across Canada and abroad, information largely provided by the private sector—provincial sectors and a number of organizations must also be taken into consideration—represent the most practical and efficient way of informing consumers.

We must not forget that, exceptionally in times of crises, the federal government would be able to invoke the Canadian Constitution to interfere in a sector such as this one. However, under the Constitution, the provinces clearly have the jurisdiction and the responsibility for regulating gasoline pricing.

I am convinced that my Bloc Quebecois colleague does not intend to encourage us to ignore provincial jurisdiction, particularly that of Quebec.

The only role the government plays in this is administration of the Competition Act. The Competition Bureau is the federal body responsible for ensuring that product prices in all non-regulated sectors of the economy are set by market forces and not by price fixing. Its role is to monitor this in all sectors of economic activity.

Since 1985, the Government of Canada has had a market-driven energy policy. This means in particular that domestic prices for oil and refinery products are based on the international price of crude oil.

Recent price hikes on petroleum products in Canada are in large part connected to developments in the international markets over which Canadians have no control, such as the huge jump in crude oil prices triggered by the increased world demand and the tight markets.

In the United States in particular, there are other complicating factors, particularly the general strike in Venezuela, the war in Iraq and civil strife in Nigeria. These geopolitical factors have contributed to reducing the available supply. What is perhaps more important is the resulting consumer uncertainty. As a result, fuel prices have risen and become more unstable, and the fluctuations are reflected at the pump.

Natural Resources Canada also plans to redesign its site to make it more accessible to the public, and to provide better links to other information sources.

I would just add in closing that, for the past 20 years, the Government of Canada has developed other solutions to help Canadians make wise energy choices and reduce their energy bills.

Through the programs of Natural Resources Canada's Office of Energy Efficiency, considerable efforts have been expended to ensure wide distribution of information on vehicle fuel efficiency. The office is also actively involved in promoting energy efficiency and the use of alternative fuels.

The Armenian PeopleAdjournment Proceedings

6:50 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. parliamentary secretary's time has expired. The hon. member for Sherbrooke.

The Armenian PeopleAdjournment Proceedings

6:50 p.m.

Bloc

Serge Cardin Bloc Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, my colleague has obviously alluded to the Competition Act.

For a long time now the public has been under the impression that it is being had. Furthermore, a member of this House, the Liberal member for Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, at one time had the support of several Liberal members when he made public a report indicating that there was collusion in the oil industry. However, the Conference Board analyses stated that there was no collusion.

The public still feels that it is being taken for a ride. There is no doubt that the world price of oil has an influence. Often, however, the increase at the pump does not reflect this. We also know that there are speculators, which makes the price fluctuate quite a bit. The price also varies considerably from one region to the next and this is not always related to transportation costs.

Profit margins are being created at the processing and refining stage. Given that all the oil companies post the same prices on the same day, it is practically impossible that there is no collusion. Having a petroleum monitoring agency would have been good for the public and helped the government regain the public's trust.