March 16, 1928

PRO

John Evans

Progressive

Mr. EVANS:

Many of its supporters were elected on a free trade platform. I would simply remind the hon. gentlemen of the free trade propaganda that was sent out throughout Saskatchewan at the last election. Why does not the minister take us into his confidence and tell us the reason for these changes? I am going to give a reason of my own, and I shall not be blamed whether my inference is right or not. It is certainly bad enough when privilege is given to one class at the expense of others, but under item 522b it divides even the Canadian manufacturers one against the other. Why? A certain company make their own yafns, and the minister said plainly yesterday that this change is made in the interest of that company, because certain other companies were hogging all the protection already given. Now let us see what is the effect on this certain company which will benefit, and which make their own yams presumably. Those that

Ways and Means-Customs Tariff

cannot make their own yams are penalized up to 15 per cent on their raw material. They will have to pass that on to the consumer; there is nothing else for it. What, then, is the effect on the company that can manufacture their own yarns? It simply means that they are placed in the position where they can add to their profits the whole of the trade penalty which the other companies have got to pay. The Minister of Finance was very much amused yesterday at having, as he thought, set this free trade party against the protectionist party in this house. To-day it has been amusing to me to see the row among the protectionists themselves, and to my mind it has established the fact for once before the people of this country that parliament is one great system of group government. Both the government and the opposition are to-day serving one group. There is no other conclusion to be drawn from the facts we heard yesterday and to-day. I repeat, they simply serve one group, and although they have described it as such an evil, we are in the midst of it. All this free trade party is trying to do is to counterbalance the power and influence of that one group which stands behind the whole protectionist element in this house to-day. I cannot help thinking that this change in the cotton tariff is one of the most barefaced bargains that any one government favorite has ever been able to make.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

Mr. Chairman, when my hon.

friend gets through his speech we are going to show our appreciation of that company by reducing the British preference item to free.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
CON

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEVENS:

Which item is that?

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

That is the item my hon.

friends complain about.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
PRO
PRO

Milton Neil Campbell

Progressive

Mr. CAMPBELL:

Do I understand the

minister to say that he proposes to eliminate the tariff under the British preference on this item we are discussing?

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

No. The complaint of my

hon. friends opposite, particularly the official opposition, has been directed against the change in the tariff item 522b, yarns and warps wholly of cotton exceeding No. 40, not more advanced than singles. Under that there were reductions on the coarser. When we come to that item I propose to move that "7$ per cent" be struck out and the word "free" inserted under the British preferential tariff, thus enlarging the policy of the British preference and diverting the business to the mother country. I hope all sides will agree with that announcement, because I understood that that is what all my hon. friends opposite were arguing for yesterday.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
CON

John Arthur Clark

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLARK:

How is that enlarging the

British preference if there was no duty before?

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

Because there will be a tariff against other countries of 10 per cent intermediate and 15 per cent ge'neral, while formerly it was free in all schedules. Does my hon. friend understand that?

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
CON

John Arthur Clark

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLARK:

I must confess I cannot

understand how. if you apply a tariff where none existed before, and then remove it, it makes any difference or enlarges the British preference.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

Let me repeat, formerly it

was free under all schedules, now it will be free under the British preference only.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
CON

Richard Bedford Bennett (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BENNETT:

If they bought their

yam in England before, and buy it there still, there will be no change.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

I should like to have my

hon. friends opinion of that when we get to the item.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
CON

Hugh Guthrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GUTHRIE:

Mr. Chairman, in any

remarks I made in regard to 522b I did not oppose the imposition of the 7i per cent. I approved it, provided the principle of protection were adopted all along the line, as it should be. But what concerns me at the moment is item 522. Within a moment of time the minister said that the new item was a reduction from the old item. That is quite different from what he stated in this house last night. Just before the sitting closed

Ways and Means-Customs Tariff

the hon. member for South Toronto (Mr. Geary) was addressing the committee. I am quoting from page 1400 of Hansard. He said:

Do these figures enable us to say whether item 522, cotton yarns, not exceeding 20's single, 10 per cent, 15 per cent and 20 per cent, constitutes an increase or a reduction in the tariff?

Mr. Robb: A number of the items are

obsolete. It is chiefly a reduction.

Mr. Geary: I am directing my attention to

No. 522.

Mr. Robb: If my hon. friend picks out 522

alone-

Mr. Geary: That is the one we are discussing, according to the chairman.

Mr. Robb: We have been discussing the items generally. I do not know whether my hon. friend wants to get on the record at this late hour all the facts bearing on the matter. In this particular item alone there is an increase.

Mr. Guthrie: There is an increase in item 522?

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

In the noise I must have

thought it was 522b. That is where it comes in.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
CON

Hugh Guthrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GUTHRIE:

As I read it there was

an increase, whether there was any noise or not.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

No.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
CON

Hugh Guthrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GUTHRIE:

Formerly all goods under 522 came in under item 534, under which yarns were free, free, free. Now they come in under item 522 subject to a tariff of 10, 15 and 20 per cent. The statement of the minister last night was correct; it is an increase. At the time he made it I marked in the margin of my copy "increase in this item." Last night he was correct; I submit that to-day he is incorrect. Let him take time to consider it, and I think he will come to the conclusion that he should change his statement and say that 522 constitutes an increase over what it has been hitherto.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
PRO

Milton Neil Campbell

Progressive

Mr. CAMPBELL:

Mr. Chairman, I congratulate the minister on making the slight change in 522b, but I think it would have been better appreciated had he done it before the effect was pointed out from this side of the house. As to whether it is an increase or not, I wish to quote an article from the Financial Times. At page 24 of that journal appears the following:

Some relief has been given the Canadian linen industry under the new Robb budget. The Financial Times is advised prior to February 17th yarns for the manufacture of linens were free of duty no matter what the source. Under the budget effective February 17th yarns imported from countries subject to British preferential rates only, are free, the intermediate tariff now being 10 per cent and the general tariff 15 per cent. Recognition has

been given the much larger wage costs incidental to linen manufacturing as compared with cotton _ and some additional protection given accordingly.

I understand that the yams covered by 522b are used in the linen industry, so presumably that is the item to which The Financial Times refers.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

We are discussing cottons

now. We will discuss linens when we come to the item.

Topic:   WAYS AND MEANS
Subtopic:   CUSTOMS TARIFF, 1927, AMENDMENT
Permalink

March 16, 1928