June 28, 1935

CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

I am informed by the

statements before me, which were laid before me just a few moments ago-since I came into the house as a matter of fact-that while as my hon. friend points out the Canadian Pacific receive subsidies, they have been carrying on under very great difficulties in view of the very heavy subsidies of which foreign ships are in receipt. No doubt my hon. friend is aware of the actions that have been taken in the neighbouring republic in the way of increasing their subsidies, and I know we hear many complaints from our steamship companies as to their inability to compete with very heavily subsidized shipping, particularly in the American republic and also in other foreign countries. They claim they simply cannot carry on this service without this additional assistance.

Topic:   TRADE AND COMMERCE
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LIB
CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

Then I am afraid I do

not understand my hon. friend's question.

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LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

I know this item will go

through, so I will cut my remarks short. This company has about 480 orientals on board as employees, and only a small proportion of the crew are white men, so I want to protest against this additional subsidy.

Supply-Trade-Subsidies

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LAB

Abraham Albert Heaps

Labour

Mr. HEAPS:

I should like to ask the

minister whether these shipping companies do not belong to a combine and do not charge the same rates for the same class of freight and passenger service. If that is the case I do not see how the question of subsidies enters into the argument.

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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

I think my hon. friend

is entirely wrong in that; I believe he is referring to the North Atlantic combine. This concerns the Pacific, and so far as I am aware there is no such combine there and the same rates are not charged because there is continuous competition in regard to the shipment of Canadian goods to the orient.

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LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

There is a combine in regard

to lumher and other commodities and the rates are set in San Francisco.

Mr. MA'NION: There are conference rates, but these subsidies go largely in mail services; at least they are paid in the name of mail

services.

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LIB
CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

Without doubt this is a

subsidy to enable them to carry on, but they carry mails as well.

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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Does the minister

say there is no combine or understanding with regard to rates in connection with coastal shipping?

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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

I was not speaking of

coastal services.

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LAB
CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

Yes, but the item of which I am speaking, concerning the Canadian Pacific railway, has to do with service to the orient. There are no Pacific coastal services

in this item.

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LAB

Abraham Albert Heaps

Labour

Mr. HEAPS:

But why should we come to the assistance of these companies that belong to a combine that fixes rates for both freight and passenger (services, whether on the Atlantic or on the Pacific? Why should we assist these combines, which are internationally controlled, by way of subsidies?

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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

There is this to remember, that if other countries subsidize their shipping to look after the shipment of goods to foreign countries and Canada does not do so, Canadian shipping will be taken entirely out of our hands and placed in the hands of foreign shippers. We are up against that all the time.

Bn connection with another branch of Canadian service, under the Canadian National, I have had brought to my attention very recently the competition of some United States lines which are very heavily subsidized. This affects our Canadian National ships, and though in that case we do not give a direct subsidy we do pay the deficit, so really it comes to the same thing.

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LAB

Abraham Albert Heaps

Labour

Mr. HEAPS:

If the rates are the same; if, as the hon. member for New Westminster says, they are fixed in San Francisco and Canadian ships are compelled to abide by the rates set in that way, in other words if a ship sailing from a Canadian port is compelled to abide by rates set in San Francisco, why should we be granting these subsidies? The only question that might .come up would be if the revenue was insufficient in that case I could understand that we might give something towards making up the deficit. The thing I object to at the present time is that we have these international rates on the Atlantic and, to my knowledge, on the Pacific, and these rates are increasing each year while other commodity prices are going dowm. Yet we come along and assist these international combines by giving them subsidies out of public funds.

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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

It may be true, as my hon. friend says, that there are conference rates. It is obvious that if powerful American shipping companies receive very heavy subsidies,-as they do-and that if Japanese companies receive subsidies from their country- which they also do-our Canadian shipping without assistance of some kind could not compete with them. It would simply go out of business, and other companies being given assistance would get the trade. We would be forced to the position of allowing our shipping to be handled by foreign ships and probably at a later time we would be forced to accept their rates.

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LAB

Abraham Albert Heaps

Labour

Mr. HEAPS:

Do the British shipping companies receive subsidies from the British government?

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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

Yes, they are heavily subsidized.

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LIB

Thomas Reid

Liberal

Mr. REID:

I realize that the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Hanson) is not in his seat, and that the Minister of Railways and Canals is just helping out. I would point out to him however that further details should have been given because this company is receiving $809,000 per year and as a matter of fact it is using slave labour. When the minister states these moneys are required so

Supply-Trade-Subsidies

as to enable them to compete with oriental or American ships I say we should have details as to the costs. Only the officers on these ships are Canadians or white persons, and the other persons employed axe orientals. These men axe hired in Hong Kong and paid between $5 and $10 per month. Under those circumstances I do not see why we cannot meet Japanese and American competition; yet we vote $809,000 to help them carry on.

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June 28, 1935