May 15, 1925

PRO

Thomas Alexander Crerar

Progressive

Mr. CRERAR:

A most vicious kind.

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CON

Robert James Manion

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

What did my hon. friend

from Marquette say?

Mr. CiRERAR: I was just remarking to

one of the hon. gentleman's friends over there that probably the bounty system is the most vicious kind of protection.

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CON

Robert James Manion

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

I do not agree with my

hon. friend that there is anything vicious about protection, I do not think there is- my hon. friend and I differ as to that. But even if there were, I have read a statement on the question of -protection by many of the best authorities, professors of political economy and others, to the effect that the bounty system is the least vicious-using my hon. friend's term-because it is a straightforward method, you know exactly what you give and what returns you get, and in many cases there is no possibility of building up the desired industry -by any other means. However, that is by the way. I just wish to impress upon the minister once again the necessity of a serious consideration of the whole question; and I hope that between this

Supply-M ines

and next year the government may give some thought to this question-as has been given in the past by various governments-the granting of iron ore bounties on the line of the steel bounty, the lead and 4 p.m. zinc bounty, the oil bounty, and various others. I believe it would be entirely in the interests of Canada if the government, could see its way clear to cooperate with the province of Ontario in this matter.

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PRO

Robert Forke

Progressive

Mr. FORKE:

The provinces of Ontario

and British Columbia have been mentioned by the hon. member for Fort William and Rainy River (Mr. Manion), and he has also spoken of Manitoba. I thought, therefore, I would quote to the House a statement made by Professor Wallace, of the university of Manitoba, that the day would come when Manitoba wtould be more famous for its minerals than for its agricultural produce. So that we are not at all blind to the fact that Manitoba has a great future in store for her as far as mineral production is concerned. I shall limit myself to mentioning this statement without at all going into the question of free trade versus protection at this time.

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PRO

Lincoln Henry Jelliff

Progressive

Mr. JELLIFF:

Is the department making

any investigation as to our oil resources, or the utilization of the tar sand in our northwestern country?

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

I might

answer the question in the affirmative although the subject is one which comes up more appropriately under another vote.

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CON

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEVENS:

Is the government considering any scheme for the development of the iron and steel industry-that is the utilization of our great deposits of iron ore- in a manner similar to that adopted by the British government under the Aids to Industry Act? Has there been any proposal for, or consideration of, a plan of that kind, in contra-distinction to the bounty system, or supplementary thereto?

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

May I say in reply to my hon. friend first, that I am not familiar with the details, but I believe a proposal of that kind has been discussed between members of the government and representatives from British Columbia, but I do not think any action has been taken on the matter at the moment, although a considerable amount of discussion has occurred. But, dealing with the question raised by the hon. member for Fort William and: Rainy River, namely, the question of assisting in the development of the iron industry in Canada

by way of a bounty, let me say that I do not go the length to which my hon. friend from Marquette (Mr. Crerar) goes in characterizing this as a most vicious kind of protection. So far as the Mines branch of the federal government is concerned at the present moment, having in mind perhaps that the most important service that could be rendered would be the evolving of a process of dealing with these low grade ores, that we are bending all our energies, working in conjunction with the American Department of Mines or any other informative source that we can find, to ascertaining whether or not a process can be developed that will make it profitable to mine and transform into pig iron the low grade iron ore that we have in Canada in large quantities. There is no question but that if that could be done we would be in a very different position in Canada from the one we now occupy; and that many of the things suggested by my hon. friend (Mr. Manion) would come about. We are very much alive to the importance of the question, and feel that perhaps we can render a great service at tlje moment by investigating every one of these processes that comes under our notice. At the moment we are working on an electrical process that we hope will prove a partial solution at least. I hope that before long some one will evolve a commercially feasible process. I can quite appreciate the desire of the Ontario government to lend encouragement along the same line; but we feel that for the time being we can best serve the development of this industry by what we are doing to-day.

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CON

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEVENS:

Has ihe minister in mind the granting of any other form of assistance this session?

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

My hon.

friend has reference to the iron industry?

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CON

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEVENS:

Yes.

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

No.

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PRO

John Morrison

Progressive

Mr. MORRISON:

Will the minister tell

us what the expenditure on the coal briquetting plant has been in the past year, and what the department is doing during the coming year in connection with that plant? Are they still co-operating with the governments of Manitoba and Saskatchewan in their experiment?

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

We have

not done anything during the past year. Speaking from memory, about, a year ago we entered into an agreement with the owner of the mines, Mr. Sutherland, that the three governments would take over the plant and develop the process. My understanding through Mr. MAY 15, 1925

Supply-Mines

Molloy, Commissioner of Labour and Industries for Saskatchewan, whose duty it is, I believe, to supervise to some extent this investigation, is that Mr. Sutherland is anxious to test out a process they have developed in Germany, and with that object in view has shipped over a very considerable amount of coal which is being tested by the German process in the hope that it may be superior to what our investigations have developed so far. However, we do know that we can make briquettes successfully, although perhaps the cost is a little more. I do not know whether Mr. Sutherland expects to reduce the cost or not, but he seems to be enamoured of the process developed by the Germans and wants to try it out thoroughly. He is on the spot himself watching the process, and we have a representative there also for the same purpose so that we may have full information. He wants to do that before he begins the making of briquettes at the plant now in existence.

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PRO

Daniel Webster Warner

Progressive

Mr. WARNER:

The minister speaks of

low grade iron ore. Is it low grade in quality or just low grade in quantity? That is, is the return low grade?

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

It is low

grade in quantity. The hon. member means low grade in metal content?

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PRO
PRO

Levi William Humphrey

Progressive

Mr. HUMPHREY:

What is meant by low grade in quantity?

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Argenteuil):

It is about

35 per cent.

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PRO

Daniel Webster Warner

Progressive

Mr. WARNER:

Is the development of the salt mines in A'lberta carried on by the Dominion government?

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May 15, 1925