July 10, 1908

LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. FIELDING.

The salaries will be fixed as required by the Civil Service Act. but promotions will be made by the Auditor General himself.

Bill reported, read the third time and passed.

Topic:   THE AUDITOR GENERAL.
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CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.


House went into committee to consider the following proposed resolution : Resolved, that it is expedient to amend the Canada Shipping Act, chapiter 113, Revised Statutes of Canada, 1906, by repealing section 958 and substituting therefor- 958. The Governor in Council may from time to time, (a) by order in council declare that the foregoing provisions of this part shall not, while such order in council is in force, apply, either throughout Canada or in any specified waiters of Canada, to the ships or vessels, or to any specified ascertained or ascertainable class or number of the ships or vessels of any foreign country in which British ships are admitted to the coasting trade of such country, and to carry goods or passengers from one port to another in such country; and (b) revoke or vary such order in counoil. 2. That the Act founded on this resolution shall not oonne into force until His Majesty's pleasure thereon has been signified by publication in the ' Canada Gazette.'-Mr. Fielding.


CON

George Taylor (Whip of the Conservative Party (1867-1942))

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. TAYLOR.

We will take the resolution now and the discussion can take place upon the Bill.

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. FIELDING.

Quite so. '

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB
LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. FIELDING.

The purpose of the BUI may be briefly stated. We have been granting coasting privileges to the ships of a number of foreign nations which in return have given us the privilege of coasting in their own land. There is nothing in this Bill about American vessels because the United States do not give us coasting privileges. However, in the case of Norway for instance, we have no coasting trade there and the privilege they give Is no advantage to us. Norway, on the other band, has been making much use of our coasting trade and the complaint is that our native vessels are placed at a disadvantage in that respect. An order in council some months ago provided that on the 1st of January next the privileges granted to these various countries, including Norway, should be cancelled and that thereafter their vessels should not be entitled to our coasting trade. We will probably all agree that is a desirable policy. But it has been represented to ns by the coal companies that this would be a hardship upon them. They say the Norwegians have been supplying vessels of a special class intended for the coal trade and that if we should suddenly determine that these vessels are to he shut out of the coasting trade it will not be possible for them in the short time allowed to find either Canadian vessels or British vessels to do the work. They also say they have a number of vessels which have been chartered for several years, and the cancellation of these charters would be a very serious loss to them. It has been suggested that we might meet their views by giving them the privilege of employing vessels of a certain class which do not come into competition with Canadian vessels. We have discovered that under the existing law, while we have the power to shut out foreign vessels altogether, we have not the power to say that a particular class of these vessels shall he admitted. What we propose by this legislation is to give the government the power not only to exclude them altogether, but to discriminate and to say th:it we may admit vessels of a certain class, these being the vessels which do not come into competition with Canadian vessels. We might allow them the coasting trade for a limited time until arrangements can he made to supply their places With British vessels. We could not even say un-

tier the present law that we would admit a vessel to the coasting trade of the Atlantic but not to the coasting trade qf the Pacific, or the great lakes, and so on. This legislation proposes that there should be elasticity to enable the government to meet the particular conditions as they arise. The general policy of the government is to exclude these vessels from the coasting trade, but under this amendment, which cannot take effect until authorized by the imperial authorities, we would have the power to make exceptions for a limited time if we so desire in such cases as I have mentioned.

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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CON

John Waterhouse Daniel

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DANIEL.

Will the class of vessels be decided on by the tonnage?

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB
CON
LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. FIELDING.

There is no distinction in the law as respects steam or sail.

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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CON

John Waterhouse Daniel

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DANIEL.

Under this the government would be able to allow Norwegian vessels of a certain tonnage to engage in the coasting trade.

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. FIELDING.

And exclude these of a smaller tonnage.

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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CON

John Waterhouse Daniel

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DANIEL.

I presume wo have no Canadian vessels to do the trade?

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. FIELDING.

Not in the case of the larger vessels, certainly.

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB

Henry Robert Emmerson

Liberal

Mr. EMMERSON.

Is it a fact that these vessels are manned by Norwegians?

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. FIELDING.

I should think so.

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB

Henry Robert Emmerson

Liberal

Mr. EMMERSON.

Is it a fact that year in and year out they do a Canadian coasting business ?

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. FIELDING.

Yes, the coal trade is largely handled by them. In some cases they are of English build for Norwegian account, owned and manned by Norwegians and under the Norwegian flag ; sometimes they are owned by Englishmen but sail under the Norwegian flag and so are treated as foreigners.

Mr, STANFIELD. I notice in the newspapers that these foreign steamers are given a preference over Canadian ships in loading at the coal mines. Could not we protect those Canadian vessels in this legislation ?

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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LIB

William Stevens Fielding (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. FIELDING.

That is a different question from the one dealt with by this Bill. The complaint there is that steamers are given preference over sailing ships and the steamers would be given preference whether they were British or Norwegians. I believe there was considerable trouble about that matter, but I am advised it is all adjusted now and that there is no complaint.

Topic:   CANADA SHIFTING ACT AMENDMENT.
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July 10, 1908