Mr. Speaker, as the hon. member indicated, the link between Cape Breton and Newfoundland is essential. There has been much in the news in recent months with regard to the ferry service.
We recognize, not just as Cape Bretoners but as maritimers and Canadians, that the link is essential. It is a continuation of the Trans-Canada Highway and is certainly a provision under the terms of Confederation for the province of Newfoundland and Labrador.
I see a commitment by the government to ensure that this service is not only continued but enhanced. Deliberations have taken place over the last number of months and a study has been put forward. We recognize that this service could be further enhanced.
We look at such things as the drop trailer service that is utilized by so many of the truckers and those who bring goods on and off the island, which certainly is essential to the people of that area. We feel that if investment is made, we can improve and enhance that service.
Investments must be made and there is a commitment on the part of the government. Some of the recommendations that came out of the recent study looked at additional investment in terminal service, in docking service and wharfage. Those are all key to providing the top level of service that can be had, so that ferries can run on time, efficiently, and in a manner that is cost effective to all involved.
I will certainly continue to work on this file. My colleague, the member for Sydney—Victoria, has put a lot of work in on this file. My caucus colleagues from Newfoundland and Labrador will continue to support this initiative. We know it is important that Marine Atlantic is healthy, efficient, effective, and provides the service that is much needed between Cape Breton and Newfoundland and Labrador.