February 28, 1941

LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

I was using that just as an illustration, because that is perhaps the most successful show in Canada to-day; certainly it is the largest. We expected and the company expected a production of thirty planes a week there by this time. Actually they have a production of fifteen. We consider that very good, and it is very good, but it is only half what they expected to have. I think this is about the best operation we have, with about five thousand men employed there, but this shows what can happen even in a well managed plant.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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NAT

Herbert Alexander Bruce

National Government

Mr. BRUCE:

Is that at Malton?

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

No; at Fort William.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

Is the pilot plant for the plane not made by that company at Fort William?

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

No, I do not think so. There is one plant there, a very good plant. The success at Fort William, of course, has been brought about because of the high type of people they have had to deal with in that locality and the great ability the workmen in that district have shown. Even with that advantage, however, they have been able to get up to only half their schedule.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
Permalink
NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

I heard there were German saboteurs in that plant, but I did not pay any attention to that.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

Oh, no; not at the head of the lakes. I make this statement simply in order to indicate some of the difficulties that have arisen. If I were asked the number of planes we hope to get by next July, I would attempt to give a forecast, but I would assume that any such forecast would be taken by hon. members as my best view of the subject at the present time. I would not expect that they would come along a year later and say, "You told us in July, 1936, that in March, 1937, we were going to have so many planes and we got only half that number." That is the difficulty in working with an industry that has no background. I could predict very closely in connection with the motor car industry, because I know and the operators of the plants know what they can do. The same is true in connection with the steel industry or any other industry that has been going a long time and has a background. We know from what they have done in the past that, given certain facilities, they can do certain things in the future and by a certain time, but that is not possible in connection with the aircraft industry.

I do not want to hold back anything with regard to the aircraft industry. If my hon. friend is worrying about facts, I will give them to him as best I can; or if I cannot do that offhand, I will get the information. I am not holding back anything, nor do I desire to hold back anything. There is nothing I could give in a secret session that I am not prepared to give in open session, so far as the aircraft industry goes. That does not apply, however, to other types of production, in connection with which the British government has placed us under the seal of secrecy.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

That is in connection with guns. Nobody is asking for that information, nor do I think we should ask for it.

War Appropriation Bill

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

That is quite right. I do not, however, wish to be represented as holding back information that may be helpful to the committee or to hon. members.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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NAT

Percy Chapman Black

National Government

Mr. BLACK (Cumberland):

What number constitutes the present programme for the re-engineered Anson machine?

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

I gave Mr. MacMillan's view on that in the report which he made following a very recent study, in which he had the benefit of the best technical advice he could find in Canada and the United States. I would prefer to leave it at that. I do not remember the figures, but the report is in Votes and Proceedings.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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NAT

Percy Chapman Black

National Government

Mr. BLACK (Cumberland):

But I presume the department would set an objective, that they would want a thousand or five thousand Anson machines. The other day I understood the minister to say that six thousand of these Jacobs engines had been ordered for Anson machines.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

No; I said that something over five thousand Jacobs engines had been ordered, and we are using them not only in the Anson but also in the Fleet 60 and the Cessena.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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NAT

Percy Chapman Black

National Government

Mr. BLACK (Cumberland):

Then the

minister does not care to say just what the Anson expectations are at the present time?

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

It is all on page 7 of Votes and Proceedings.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

Before the minister goes on to another point, may I say to him that we are not asking him to make

a forecast. I do not think such forecasts have a great deal of value. We wish to know what steps are being taken to deal with a situation which the minister admits is bad; what is being done to deal with the inefficiency, the lack of coordination, the. poor management in certain instances. Are any steps being taken at all? Have we any reason to believe the condition will be better six months from now than it is to-day? Forecasts are not worth a great deal, but is any investigation being carried on to find the reason for the present situation, to remedy it and to accelerate production? That is what we had in mind.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

We are carrying on intensive investigations, and we have succeeded in bringing in some men with wide manufacturing experience. It is very difficult to get them, because the aeroplane industry everywhere in the world is expanding as quickly as it is in Canada, if not more quickly. It is difficult to get these men, but we have succeeded in getting two or three who already have been

14873-73}

able to make quite a contribution and will continue to do so. Similarly, the manufacturers themselves are gaining experience from day to day. Gradually, the situation is getting less chaotic and more systematized. In the beginning it was difficult to give orders for months ahead. Now we have practically the entire industry on the basis of twelve months ahead. The industry knows exactly what it will be called upon to do for the next year, and it is getting in shape. I think three months from now, we shall have a different looking industry from the one we have to-day, but I can only say that it is improving steadily. The other day I told the press that I thought the industry was about three months behind its expectations, and I still think that is a fair statement. In other words, what we expected to have to-day we shall probably have about three months from now. As I say, everything possible is being done to get the industry on a better organized and more efficient basis, and I think every contractor is working as hard as we are to that end.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

May I suggest one thing which I do not think is being done and which I believe ought to be done. In Great Britain, production speeded up the moment it was possible to get labour behind the war effort on an organized basis. Some similar attempt has been made in this country by the setting up of a labour supply committee, but not on anything like the same scale. Some of these firms that are working on government orders actually have refused to allow the men to organize. I have here a copy of a notice which was posted in one plant, stating that they did not want these men organizing, and that they would consider any man who tried to organize them or connect them up with any trade union as being subversive.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Mr. HOWE:

May I ask my hon. friend

if that is not illegal? He knows the law better than I do.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

It may be

illegal, but I suggest that it is being done.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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February 28, 1941