Mr. Speaker, the hon. member opposite is asking me how I can be proud of what is happening in Quebec. I was born in Maniwaki. I was born there. I am an anglophone. I went to an English school. My mother is francophone. I am Aboriginal and proud of it. I am a Quebecker who lives in Canada, and I am proud of it.
Am I proud of the realities of my region, where unemployment is higher that average? The answer is no. I am certainly not proud of that. But did I give up? Did I decide to do nothing, to say it is hopeless and to cry over what could have been? Absolutely not. Before June 28, I decided to run in the last election in order to come here and represent the people of the riding of Pontiac, the people of my region. I wanted to come here and work with the Government of Quebec and the 43 municipalities of my riding, with the strengths and weaknesses of that region, to find ways to bring economic development home.
I mentioned the business in Déléage that imports wood from Peru. If we were sitting down at a table and discussing this, I am convinced that the majority of us would say that it does not make sense, that it cannot be done. The Polish entrepreneur, who lives in Maniwaki and whose name is Stosik, who is a native of that municipality, who, like me, believes in his region, opened a sawmill in Peru to process wood, import it to Canada, send it by ship and other means of transportation to Maniwaki-Déléage, make mouldings and doors out of it and then sell these products on the market.
I am asked if this is a source of pride. It is indeed. That entrepreneur got some help. From who? From Canada Economic Development Is our region of Pontiac perfect? No, it is not perfect. Is there room for improvement? Yes, there is room for improvement. How are we going to achieve these objectives? By working together. With who? With LDBs, CFCDs, RCMs, mayors, municipalities and the Quebec government. The idea is that everyone must share the same objective, which is to have a beautiful region that is economically sound and strong.
As for employment insurance, it is something temporary. It is something that we must try to eliminate over time. Will it be possible to completely eliminate employment insurance? I do not think so. Is there room for improvement? The answer is yes. I have 18 files with Canada Economic Development on which I am working in cooperation with stakeholders in my riding. In our region, we believe in development. We need the help of all levels of government. We must work together. We have differences of opinion. That is fine. It is healthy. This is entrepreneurship. The idea is to talk to each other to find regional solutions for our people, so that we can put them to work, because they are proud. There is pride in being a Quebecker, a resident of Maniwaki and a member of Parliament representing these people here in the House.