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House of Commons Hansard #45 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-2.

Topics

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Health and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, I think all members of the House realize that I cannot get into any details on procurement, but indeed, as the hon. member no doubt knows, we want to ensure that aboriginal Canadians wherever they live get the best health care from the best sources available with the best health outcomes.

That is the strategy of this government when it comes to aboriginal health care.

Securities IndustryOral Questions

June 21st, 2006 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Loubier Bloc Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

Mr. Speaker, more than anything, Quebeckers hate being ripped off. They are very attached to their securities commission, which is rightfully theirs under the Constitution.

How can the finance minister justify to Quebeckers his plan to bring together the entire securities industry under a single, Canada-wide commission, in Toronto, when this does not fall under his jurisdiction by virtue of the Canadian Constitution?

Securities IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the issue is as part of our economic federation whether it is in the best interests of Canadians across Canada to have one common securities regulator. The issue is not whether it needs to be a federal regulator or a regulator that is created by the provinces.

The point of the discussion which we hope to have with the finance ministers and the ministers responsible for securities regulation next week when we meet together is to address that issue in terms of making sense of our economic federation and protecting investors in Canada and having adequate enforcement, whether it is in our best interests to have one common securities regulator.

Securities IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Loubier Bloc Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Constitution is clear: securities are a provincial jurisdiction.

How can the federal government try to convince Quebeckers that the Quebec securities commission is not working and that control should be centralized in Toronto when, according to the OECD, our existing system is the second best in the world? Could it be that the minister's perception is clouded by his desire to favour Toronto?

Securities IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

No, Mr. Speaker. I want to favour Canadians. I want to protect investors who invest in RSPs, who invest in pension plans, who invest directly in the market. There is a significant market in Montreal in the derivatives section that can certainly be accommodated in our discussions.

As I say, the point is not a provincial jurisdiction point. The point is the best interests of Canadians who need protection in our securities markets.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Marc Lemay Bloc Abitibi—Témiscamingue, QC

Mr. Speaker, Canada has stated that it is withdrawing its support for the proposed United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, although the international community has been working on this declaration for 20 years. The vote will take place on June 29 in Geneva.

How can the government explain Canada's about-face when the secretary general of Amnesty International states that it is difficult to imagine that a worse problem could exist with no will to solve it after so many years of work?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice ConservativeMinister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians

Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the hon. member's question, but I do not agree with him.

The proposed wording is incompatible with our Constitution, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, various Supreme Court decisions, the National Defence Act and federal policies on aboriginal land claims and self-government.

We must work with other countries and the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development to improve the drafting of such a declaration.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Marc Lemay Bloc Abitibi—Témiscamingue, QC

Mr. Speaker, I invite the minister to reread article 45 of the draft Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which reads as follows:

Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act contrary to the Charter of the United Nations.

What, then, is the explanation for the radical shift to the right, if it is not Canada's desire to align itself with the United States and Australia, disregarding the tradition of dialogue with and openness to aboriginal peoples that Canada and Quebec have maintained until now?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice ConservativeMinister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians

Mr. Speaker, this is a matter of some importance. Let us ensure that the public record is clear on this matter.

The draft declaration has never been supported by any previous government of this country. There is no change of policy in that regard. It is not supported by the Australians. It is not supported by New Zealand.

It is contrary to or inconsistent with the Canadian charter, with our Constitution Act, the distribution of powers. It is inconsistent with previous decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada and very inconsistent with the National Defence Act and the treaties and policies under which we negotiate treaties.

This is a draft which requires further work. That work is under way. We support a final text as long as it is improved.

Softwood LumberOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Liberal Beauséjour, NB

Mr. Speaker, it has been almost two months since the Prime Minister announced his softwood sellout, but the fallout continues.

Industry is revolting to save itself. Premiers are feeling betrayed. We are now getting details of a leaked letter from the Bush administration to its lumber lobby confirming that the real goal of the U.S. is to completely hobble the Canadian forestry sector for at least seven years.

Will the Prime Minister admit today that his grand proclamation in April was akin to erecting a mission accomplished banner on an aircraft carrier before the job was actually done?

Softwood LumberOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Vancouver Kingsway B.C.

Conservative

David Emerson ConservativeMinister of International Trade and Minister for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, the softwood lumber discussions are proceeding extremely well. Provinces are very supportive.

The so-called letter that is being referred to was an undated, unsigned letter. It has no status whatever in the discussions that are ongoing on softwood lumber.

I can tell the hon. member that his region, Quebec, Ontario, the Prairies and the west and B.C. are going to be much better off under this softwood lumber agreement than under any other alternative.

Softwood LumberOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Liberal Beauséjour, NB

Mr. Speaker, under this so-called deal, at current softwood lumber prices our producers will face up to 10% duty with an export cap. That is not free trade. That is not fair trade. In fact, it is much worse than the illegal status quo.

Negotiators have now left the table and there is no plan to comply with NAFTA.

Will the Prime Minister do the right thing, support our Canadian industry now and guarantee that NAFTA and Canada's sovereignty will be protected if he goes back to the sellout table?

Softwood LumberOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Vancouver Kingsway B.C.

Conservative

David Emerson ConservativeMinister of International Trade and Minister for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, never has the softwood lumber industry been better and more strongly supported than by this Prime Minister and this government.

I want to remind the hon. member that no regions would have to accept an export tax of that level. They could opt for a different option and they would be facing a much less severe duty and a much less severe export tax. It would create much greater stability and much more predictability in this industry.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Liberal Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, in Washington last week the Minister of Industry met secretly with the president of Boeing's defence division and with top representatives of Lockheed Martin, a potential bidder on the tactical airlift purchase.

By meeting with these companies secretly, the minister has opened up our country to legal challenges for years to come. Why was the Prime Minister blind to the fact that these meetings take away the integrity of what must be an open, transparent and competitive process?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I was in Washington last week and am pretty proud to have had a first meeting with my counterpart. We had discussions about the security partnership and the prosperity partnership.

Also, I had some meetings with the aerospace industry. Those were very profitable meetings. As is usual for the Minister of Industry, I have to meet my counterparts and also meet industry. I did that at the beginning of this mandate and I am going to follow that to meet the industry stakeholders.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, I imagine the industry minister's knees must be sore, what with all the negotiating in Washington.

In a public relations strategy and, let us be honest, in an attempt to hide the facts, the Minister of Industry secretly met in Washington with directors from Boeing and Lockheed Martin to make us forget the total lack of transparency in the C-17 issue.

The Conservatives are now getting ready to announce more military procurements. The agreement allegedly proposes that maintenance of the tactical helicopters and aircraft over a 20-year period will be assigned to the industry, but through a competition run by these two U.S. companies.

In addition to giving up Canada's security and sovereignty, is the Minister of Defence now preparing to leave our procurement policy to the Americans? Is that what he is saying?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Carleton—Mississippi Mills Ontario

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor ConservativeMinister of National Defence

First of all, Mr. Speaker, any decision taken by this government with respect to defence equipment will be in the interests of the military, will serve the needs of Canada's security and will also provide industry with plentiful benefits. We will always, when we acquire equipment, have it sovereign, under our control, and we will manage the equipment.

Goods and Services TaxOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Dave Batters Conservative Palliser, SK

Mr. Speaker, this government delivered on its promise to reduce the GST from 7% to 6%. After crossing the floor to a party that once campaigned on scrapping the GST, Liberal leadership hopeful and member for Kings—Hants now says he wants to increase the GST.

Can the finance minister tell this House and leadership candidates opposite why the GST reduction is good for all Canadians?

Goods and Services TaxOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I know that July 1 will be a day of mourning for the members of the GST club opposite. That is the day the rest of Canadians will be celebrating the 1% reduction in the GST, which will come into force on July 1. I understand that the bill is passing through the Senate today.

I thank the members opposite for permitting the budget bill to pass through the House on unanimous consent. It gives me a warm feeling of collegiality at the end of the session.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the United States activated their so-called missile defence shield for the first time. This is another step in this alarming arms race. Canadians are strongly opposed to an arms race in space.

Can the Prime Minister tell us whether Canada is still refusing to take part in the missile defence shield?

Does Canada reject the concept of weapons in space?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Mr. Speaker, I can certainly confirm to the hon. member that Canada is in no way, shape or form embarking on any further discussions with the United States of America on ballistic missile defence.

I can tell her, as she is probably already aware, that the former ambassador of Canada to the United States, Frank McKenna, has urged all members of the Liberal Party and Liberal leadership contenders to take a look at this issue, so perhaps they will pronounce themselves on it in the near future.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Dawn Black NDP New Westminster—Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, just like Frank McKenna, more and more Liberals now want Canada to join the missile defence madness.

New Democrats are focused on the World Peace Forum in Vancouver, but the critical question is which side the government is on. Is it for peace or for an escalated arms race? According to the Department of National Defence, the relationship between Canada Command and the U.S. Northern Command will deepen integration. Is the government joining the missile defence program by stealth, just like documents from DND seem to indicate?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Carleton—Mississippi Mills Ontario

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, this government is for peace. We are always for peace. We have made no changes to the previous government's policy with respect to ballistic missile defence. There have been no changes. We recently had a Norad agreement, which added maritime surveillance but did not make any other changes, so we are in a status quo.

FinanceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Liberal Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, the last time the Conservatives took office, the International Monetary Fund sounded the alert because the Canada Pension Plan was not viable. Then the Liberal government secured the Canada Pension fund for the next 75 years. Today we are hearing that the Conservatives want to tinker with this plan.

Will the Minister of Finance really jeopardize the pensions of future generations?

FinanceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for raising the IMF issue. The report the IMF did with respect to our budget and our efforts on the Canadian economy was quite complimentary last week.

On the issue he raises with respect to the CPP and the QPP, that is an issue we referenced in the fiscal balance paper that was published with the budget. I am sure the hon. member has read it. It is an issue of intergenerational equity with respect to taxation, which we do intend to discuss with the finance ministers next week when we gather.