April 3, 1915

CON

Alfred Thompson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ALFRED THOMPSON:

How is this bounty fund administered, as to when and where the bounty is paid? I ask this question because at present we have some very promising silver-lead properties in the Yukon, and they are just beginning to ship the ore. I do not know what percentage of lead this ore contains, but I believe it is pretty high. For the information of the people in the Yukon interested in that industry, I would be glad if the minister would tell us how this bounty money is paid, whether at the mine or at the smelter or when the lead is smelted.

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CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

The object of the bounty was to encourage silver-lead smelting, and the smelting of other ores than silver and gold in Canada, so that it is not a bounty upon the ore but a bounty upon the products smelted in Canada.

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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

Has anything been done by the Government towards prohibiting the export of nickel in its raw state or in the matte? Canada practically controls the

nickel supply of the world, and there has been a great deal of agitation in the newspapers of late in regard to this question. It was brought up in the Ontario legislature, and I would like to know if this Government has been dealing in any way with the question.

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CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

If my hon. friend has been interested in nickel and in the controversy that has been going on, he probably knows as much as I do in regard to that question. We have one of the largest, if not the largest, sources of supply of nickel

in the world, and we are the principal exporter of nickel ore and in the matte-mostly in the matte; but the refining of the ore, as well as the ultimate refining of the matte, has up to the present time been done in Great Britain or in the United States. On account of the uses to which nickel is put, the subject, since the war has broken out, has come to a prominence in another way rather than by the mere establishment of an industry in Canada. The Canadian Government, as I think the House has been informed, has been acting in close sympathy and co-operation with the British Government with reference to the ultimate destination of nickel, and an arrangement has been made between the two Governments, which is entirely to the satisfaction of the British Government, towards directing the ultimate destination of nickel refined from Canadian matte or ore. It is not advisable to say just what that arangement is.

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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

My information is that

the amount of labour expended on nickel after it reaches the stage of matte, in refining it further to make it fit for commerce, is much greater than the amount of labour expended in mining, roasting and smelting, and that absolutely none of the further refining is done in Canada. The whole nickel industry of Canada, which is, I understand, about 85 per cent of the nickel industry of the world, nickel being found in only one other place, namely, New Caledonia, in the region of Australia, is in the hands of two companies-the Mond Company of England, and the Canada Copper Company of Sudbury, which refines all its products in the United States. I do not suggest that the minister should say anything definite at the present time, but serious consideration should be given to the question whether something cannot be accomplished by which the nickel can be refined in Canada or at least within the British Empire. If that were done, we would have a much better control over the industry. If nickel cannot be procured, proper armour-plate cannot be manufactured; so that the subject is worthy of consideration, both from the war point of view and from the economic point of view, of having many millions of dollars spent in Canada instead of in the United States and Great Britain, especially when we have the whole matter in our own hands.

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CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

What my hon.

friend says is in many particulars along my own line of thought. I would think, how-

ever, without having made a study of the question, that when you come to the employment of labour, the major part of the labour expended on nickel is done in our country. When you come to the refining of the nickel, a large part of the expenses is on the equipment and machinery; but not being an expert on that matter, I am not certain. My hon. friend is on the same platform with me in this respect, that we are both in favour of inade-in-Canada.

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LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER:

I have received several

petitions asking that the export of nickel be restricted. Possibly the form of the petition emanated originally from the hon. member for South York (Mr. W. F. Maclean). At any rate the petitions have been received. While possibly it is not formal, I would be very glad, if the minister would on behalf of the Government, give in a sentence what would be a fair answer to the petitioners.

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CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

I do not remember just what the wording of the petition is, but its object is that steps should be taken ii' possible, by which the nickel, which is found in Canada and the initial processes in regard to which are carried out in Canada, should be further refined in Canada itself, so that the finished article being in Canada might be absolutely under the control of Canada, which it is not now, when it is exported either to the United States or Great Britain. The Government, however, while it has a large interest in that question, has not yet come.to any conclusion, either that nickel should be prohibited from going out in the form of matte to another country, or that the Government itself should undertake the operation or refining it. There are a good many factors to be thought of in the establishment of such an industry, and as to the capital and equipment necessary for it in Canada. I do not think I can give any more formal answer than that.

Trade and Commerce-salaries and contingencies under the Inspection and Sale Act, $3,000.

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CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

This vote has

been reduced by $2,000. I have been economical in it; perhaps I have been too economical. Last year we had a vote of $5,000, and we did not expend within $2,000 of it for the inspection we put on and the expenses we incurred, and on the appeal of the Minister of Finance I reduced the vote. I am sorry I reduced it so much.

Trade and Commerce-salaries and contingencies under the Cullers Act, including an amount of $2,000 for superannuated cullers, $9,400.

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CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

The committee

will notice the reduction in this item. A reduction occurs each year, because as the old officers who are superannuated pass away, their superannuation allowances do not of course have to be provided for.

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LIB
CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

An arrangement as to the cullers was made some years ago, by which those who were not considered necessary for the carrying on of the work, which is vastly diminished, as my hon. friend knows, and who had been a long while in the service, were put on the superannuation list. I am not quite sure, but I think a slight contribution to the superannuation fund was taken from their salaries.

Census and Statistics, $50,000.

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LIB
CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

As the tabulations are finished in the census which was taken in 1911, the help necessary to make these tabulations passes out.

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LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER:

Then you actually have one department of the Government that dispenses with services that are not needed any longer?

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CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

I try to do that, and some times, especially in times like these, it is pretty difficult to do.

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LIB

Wilfrid Laurier (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Liberal

Sir WILFRID LAURIER:

The hon. gentleman is not much like his colleagues.

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CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

When you have to let temporary employees go after they have been at work for two or three years, and in times like these when many of them have nothing to depend upon, it makes one think carefully and examine closely to see if there is not work to be done. We keep for this work those that are deserving and let the others go. That is what I try to do.

Canada Year Book, $10,000.

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LIB

Frank Oliver

Liberal

Mr. OLIVER:

Is it not possible to bring the publication of the Year Book closer up-to-date? Any issues of the Year Book that I have ever seen have been so far behind that much of their interest and value has been lost. The Year Book is a most valuable compilation, but it loses much of that value by reason of its lateness.

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CON

George Eulas Foster (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

I found that difficulty when I came into office, and I have no doubt hon. gentlemen opposite found it so in their time. The difficulty is not so

much in getting the Year Book ready in time, but, after it is ready, getting it printed on account of the congestion of printing at that season. I am glad to hear the hon. gentleman speak of it as being a valuable work. I have not heard much of it from members of the House, but I hope all have got copies and have looked into it. I think the Year Book shows a great advance in its make-up and material, and we are trying to make a really good Year Book. This year, several new features were added, and I have had very strong commendation of the work from people in other countries as well as people in Canada.

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April 3, 1915