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House of Commons Hansard #188 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was asbestos.

Topics

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Vaughan Ontario

Conservative

Julian Fantino ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, this government does not need any lessons from that party. Our government is committed to poverty alleviation and achieving results for those most in need, and we are doing exactly that in a way that promotes the best of Canadian values and long-term prosperity and security.

Let me be clear. CIDA does not subsidize mining companies or NGOs. CIDA is an outcome-driven agency and we use legitimate vehicles, including the private sector, to help bring those most in need out of poverty.

Canadians deserve no less.

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar NDP Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is sad to see the government turn its back on poverty in the developing world. Do the Conservatives really think mining companies are better at delivering foreign aid than, say, groups like Oxfam?

The OECD admonished Conservatives for confusing “development objectives and the promotion of commercial interests”. The minister has failed to set consistent priorities, and the world is noticing. Will he act on the OECD recommendations and put the priorities of the poor ahead of the promotion of commercial interests?

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Vaughan Ontario

Conservative

Julian Fantino ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, it is not surprising, of course, that there would be selective listening to the things that I have said and what this government is doing. We are not funding mining companies. We are helping countries develop sustainability so that they can address issues of poverty and health and do the kinds of things that they need to lift themselves out of poverty. We are being strategic with taxpayers' money, something that party does not know anything about.

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar NDP Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, it seems like the minister at times confuses his portfolio with the Minister of Industry's, but this is not about bailing countries out for their “food issues”. This is about a $5 billion aid budget and a mandate to reduce poverty. This is about real people in need around the world. The world needs Canada to take the issue seriously.

Will the minister go back to CIDA's core mandate and start delivering results instead of just delivering speeches?

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Vaughan Ontario

Conservative

Julian Fantino ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, we are focusing Canadian taxpayers' investments where they have the most and the greatest outcome, and we are getting the job done and results achieved. The list of work that we are doing is impressive. We are being praised by the countries that we are helping. We are being praised by NGOs. The only party that is not with the program is that party.

EthicsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Andrews Liberal Avalon, NL

Mr. Speaker, the allegations of Conservative corruption are alive and well. Thus far, the run and hide minister from Labrador cannot explain charges of election overspending, corporate donations, free flights and illegal loans.

Now let us see if the minister might surprise us, rise in his place and explain today's charges of corruption. The parliamentary secretary just admitted there will be big benefits from Muskrat Falls. Well, it is the minister and his family and business connections that are reaping the benefits from the Muskrat Falls project. Why has he not removed himself from the discussions around the loan guarantee to avoid this obvious conflict of interest?

EthicsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Cypress Hills—Grasslands Saskatchewan

Conservative

David Anderson ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, the member opposite embarrasses himself by refusing to deal with the facts. The facts are that we have no role to play in awarding the contracts on this project. Again, I will point out that the project has a lot of benefits for the Atlantic region. I hope that the Liberal Party is not beginning to take on the anti-development, anti-trade, anti-energy policies that we see so often in the NDP.

HealthOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Liberal Vancouver Centre, BC

Mr. Speaker, there is a critical shortage of the drug Tuberculin in the U.S. and Canada, a drug that is needed to test for tuberculosis. No new supply is available until April 2013, but this is not listed on the drug shortage website the minister boasts about.

Public health officers have to limit and ration tests to only those in contact with known TB. The minister knows that TB is rampant in Canada's north and that it is highly contagious. Testing and early treatment will limit its spread.

Why did the Public Health Agency not warn Canadians of this critical problem and what is the minister's plan to resolve it urgently?

HealthOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, our approach has been to work with the provinces and the drug companies so that they can share information about drug shortages publicly and on a website. Also, it was encouraging that at this year's health ministers meeting, all ministers agreed to work collaboratively on this issue.

We will continue to monitor whether companies make the information available to doctors and patients, and if they do not, then we will be open to considering passing other legislation. We have made significant investments related to tuberculosis research in Canada.

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Guy Caron NDP Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, for many years my region has been working extremely hard to become the hub of the marine industry, and these efforts are paying off.

The expertise and quality of work in the Lower St. Lawrence are recognized around the world, but the Conservatives have decided to put obstacles in the way. After ignoring the need for a breakwater at the Rimouski port, after the unacceptable firing of many experienced scientists and after closing the Maurice Lamontagne Institute's department of ecotoxicology, they are now closing the Institute's library. They are not modernizing it, they are closing it.

Will the minister listen to the pleas of the research centres' archivists and businesses in my region to keep this priceless jewel open?

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Egmont P.E.I.

Conservative

Gail Shea ConservativeMinister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, we are working to modernize our library service with a model that will emphasize the use of digital collections, supplemented by the existing packing and shipping of copyrighted materials that cannot be digitized. Library services will continue to be provided in both French and English. We are moving DFO into the 21st century and saving taxpayers millions of dollars.

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Pierre-Luc Dusseault NDP Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, “modernizing” should not be synonymous with “closing”.

Closing the Maurice Lamontagne Institute's library affects more than just the Lower St. Lawrence area. It is an affront to the francophone scientific community in Canada. This is another sad example of the Conservatives' contempt for science and the French language. It is Fisheries and Oceans' only French library, but the Conservatives do not care.

Why are they once again making decisions based on blind ideology rather than on what is best for Canadians?

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Egmont P.E.I.

Conservative

Gail Shea ConservativeMinister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, we are modernizing our library services. We are taking advantage of the increasing availability of information resources in digital form. Even today, most requests received are delivered electronically. That is why we are changing. We are saving taxpayers millions of dollars because more people are moving to the electronic mode of asking for these materials.

Old Port of Montréal CorporationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Bernard Trottier Conservative Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadians were alarmed by reports of inappropriate spending by the Old Port of Montréal Corporation independent crown corporation. An arm's length third party is currently examining and authorizing all spending.

Could the Minister of Public Works and Government Services update the House on any developments regarding the management of the Old Port and some of the government's other strategic properties?

Old Port of Montréal CorporationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Edmonton—Spruce Grove Alberta

Conservative

Rona Ambrose ConservativeMinister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, our government is committed to strong fiscal management of taxpayers' dollars. It is imperative that Canadians have confidence in how our crown corporations operate and use their hard-earned tax dollars.

The Old Port of Montréal Corporation will be placed under the management of the Canada Lands Company Limited, in order to strengthen its governance, efficiency and accountability.

The Old Port of Montreal Corporation will be placed under the stewardship of Canada Lands Company Limited in order to strengthen its governance, efficiency and accountability. This will ensure that the Old Port of Montreal Corporation will have the opportunity to reach the great potential that we know it holds for both residents and visitors to Montreal.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

November 29th, 2012 / 2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Jim Karygiannis Liberal Scarborough—Agincourt, ON

Mr. Speaker, twice I wrote to the Minister of Foreign Affairs requesting that he contact the Egyptians with respect to the false accusations that my constituent, Nader Fawzy, participated in the production of the movie “Innocence of Muslims”. The minister ignored my letters. Publicly the minister said that quiet diplomacy was the way to go.

The minister's quiet diplomacy got Mr. Fawzy wrongfully convicted and sentenced to death in Egypt. Will the minister now make some noise and get Mr. Fawzy's name cleared and the death sentence removed?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary East Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, our officials have previously been in touch with Mr. Fawzy. We assured him that we have been working with Egyptian authorities on this issue, and we will continue to do so.

We are pleased that Mr. Fawzy has been in touch with local authorities, as we urge anyone to do should they feel their safety and security is in any way jeopardized.

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Pierre Nantel NDP Longueuil—Pierre-Boucher, QC

Mr. Speaker, what we are hearing on the news makes us wonder if the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages is already on Christmas break. It would not be surprising because there is nothing on the government's legislative agenda, no proposals, nothing.

The TVA network is reporting that not a single management position will be among the 200 positions cut at Library and Archives Canada. Some managers will even receive bonuses and promotions. It is unacceptable to see the minister wash his hands of this.

How can the minister allow Library and Archives Canada to cut all these positions and public access?

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, I saw the news on the TVA network. Quite frankly, the allegations are absolutely false.

If my colleague would like to learn more about what is happening at Library and Archives Canada, I urge him to invite Daniel J. Caron to the heritage committee. We could certainly discuss this matter. What we are doing is reinvesting in order to open the doors of Library and Archives Canada to more Canadians than ever before and give them access to its services and contents. We will continue with this work in order to improve the situation for all Canadians.

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Laurie Hawn Conservative Edmonton Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, for years, the NDP has not voted for veterans on a single issue: no new money for veterans, no new services for veterans, even no to agent orange funding.

Yesterday was a different story. The NDP proposed a $2.2 million cut in services to veterans, taking the side of public service union bosses over veterans by trying to keep open a small number of regional offices, even when it means that the NDP will be blocking an increase at over 600 Service Canada offices where veterans can now get service.

Could the Minister of Veterans Affairs please explain to the House what the government's position is on what the NDP proposed yesterday?

Veterans AffairsOral Questions

3 p.m.

Lévis—Bellechasse Québec

Conservative

Steven Blaney ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, fortunately there are members like the member for Edmonton Centre who are providing outstanding support for veterans and our men and women in uniform. This is in sharp contrast to what we witnessed yesterday at the veterans affairs committee. We know that the NDP vote against veterans all the time, but not only did they vote against them but they also wanted to cut services to veterans.

Not to worry, though, because our Conservatives were there to stop that. We will actually be providing services to veterans in 600 Service Canada offices in the country, including in the Northwest Territories, Prince Edward Island and via three offices in the Yukon.

HealthOral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Raymond Côté NDP Beauport—Limoilou, QC

Mr. Speaker, we would like to address a serious issue. A little more than a month ago, a reddish dust cloud that allegedly originated at the Port of Québec spread to Limoilou. According to some analyses, this dust could contain a worrisome concentration of heavy metals, which is a real problem for public health. Throughout the summer, other similar clouds were observed in the Quebec City region.

Is the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities aware of this situation? Can he specify the nature of these emissions? What is his plan to protect the health of Canadians?

HealthOral Questions

3 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, in his question, the hon. member said “allegedly originated”. This is just speculation. He does not know where it originated, but once again, he is speculating.

The Port of Québec is managed by an independent organization that does its job responsibly. I trust Mr. Girard and his team to do a good job.

I would like to remind hon. members that a city's environmental issues and all the rest are monitored by the province and the country, but mostly by the city itself.

HealthOral Questions

3 p.m.

Bloc

André Bellavance Bloc Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, while negotiations surrounding the Canada-Europe free trade agreement are going on behind closed doors, as of next week and with just as little transparency, the government plans to get involved in another round of negotiations on a trans-Pacific partnership agreement. Quebec's beef and pork producers are being left out in the cold since Europe systematically closed its market to them, as Marcel Groleau, president of the Union des producteurs agricoles du Québec, pointed out.

Can the Minister of International Trade guarantee that these agreements will strengthen agricultural exporters' access to foreign markets, as stipulated in the Bloc Québécois's motion that was unanimously adopted here in the House in 2005?

HealthOral Questions

3 p.m.

Abbotsford B.C.

Conservative

Ed Fast ConservativeMinister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, I can assure the member that in all of our international negotiations on trade and investment, we promote the interests of Canadians across all sectors, including farmers. We do that consistently in our EU negotiations and in our trans-Pacific partnership negotiations.

There is only one party in the House that has consistently stood up for farmers, that is the Conservative government, and we will continue to do so.