July 25, 1946


Hon. J. A. MacKINNON (Minister of Trade and Commerce): Mr. Speaker, I wish to announce that agreement has been reached between the government of the United Kingdom and the government of Canada for the purchase by the former of Canadian wheat over the four years beginning 1st August, 1946. The agreement provides that the United Kingdom will purchase and the Canadian government will supply the following quantities each year: 1946-47-160 million bushels; 194748-160 million bushels; 1948-49-140 million bushels; 1949-50-140 million bushels. The contract provides that in the event of the United Kingdom requiring from Canada any additional quantities of wheat that the Canadian government is prepared to make available, such additional quantities as the Canadian government offers and the United Kingdom government accepts shall in all respects be subject to the provisions of the agreement. Part of the quantity of wheat specified in the contract will be supplied in the form of flour to the following amounts: 1946-47-500,000 tons firm with an additional quantity up to 140,000 tons dependent upon the out-turn of the crop; 1947-48-400,000 tons firm with an additional quantity up to 140,000 tons dependent upon the out-turn of the crop; 1948-49-a minimum of 300,000 tons, the actual tonnage to be negotiated by 1st July, 1947; 1949-50-a minimum of 300,000 tons, the actual tonnage to be negotiated by 1st July, 1948.


?

Mr. COLD WELL@

Are those long or short tons?

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS DROPPED FROM THE ORDER PAPER- DECISION OF MR. SPEAKER
Sub-subtopic:   AGREEMENT BETWEEN CANADA AND UNITED KINGDOM
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LIB

James Angus MacKinnon (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. MacKINNON:

Long tons.

3S36

Wheat Agreement

The price which the United Kingdom government undertake to pay for the wheat supplied is as follows, basis No. 1 Manitoba northern, in store Fort William-Port Arthur, Vancouver or Churchill: 1946-47-a fixed price of 1 -55 dollars per bushel; 1947-48-a fixed price of 1-55 dollars per bushel; 1948-49- a minimum price of 1-25 dollars per bushel, the- actual price to be negotiated by 31st December, 1947; 1949-50-a minimum price of one dollar per bushel, the actual price to be negotiated by 31st December, 1948.

The contract provides that its terms and conditions shall be subject to any modification or amendment which may be necessary to bring it into conformity with any international agreements or arrangements later concluded to which both governments are parties. Nothing in the agreement will affect decisions which may be taken on the basis of recommendations of the International Emergency Food Council.

The contract is based upon commercial considerations of mutual interest. It ensures to the United Kingdom substantial quantities of wheat during the expected period of shortage at prices below those which would be payable were there to be a free market at the present time. This is the commercial advantage which the United Kingdom secures. In the later period of the contract Canada receives the advantages of a guaranteed market, though for a diminished quantity, and of the assurance of at least the stated minimum prices. In determining the actual price in the last two years regard will be had to the extent to which the agreed price for the first two years falls below the world price for that period. Our farmers are therefore protected from crippling losses should there be a world slump in wheat prices. This is the commercial advantage which Canada secures.

I wish to table three copies in English and three copies in French of the agreement signed between the government of the United Kingdom and the government of Canada.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS DROPPED FROM THE ORDER PAPER- DECISION OF MR. SPEAKER
Sub-subtopic:   AGREEMENT BETWEEN CANADA AND UNITED KINGDOM
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PC

John Bracken (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. BRACKEN:

I should like to direct a question to the Minister of Trade and Commerce arising out of the announcement he has just made. The house is aware that the practice has grown up of permitting members of the government to make statements at the opening of the house, which statements are not debatable. I do not wish to infringe that rule, but I should like to ask the minister or the Acting Prime Minister if they have in mind providing an opportunity for discussion of the policy just announced by the Minister of Trade and Commerce.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS DROPPED FROM THE ORDER PAPER- DECISION OF MR. SPEAKER
Sub-subtopic:   AGREEMENT BETWEEN CANADA AND UNITED KINGDOM
Permalink
LIB

James Angus MacKinnon (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. MacKINNON:

Mr. Speaker, I anticipate that the estimates of my department will be before the house very soon, and at that time there will be an opportunity for full discussion.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS DROPPED FROM THE ORDER PAPER- DECISION OF MR. SPEAKER
Sub-subtopic:   AGREEMENT BETWEEN CANADA AND UNITED KINGDOM
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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

May I ask the minister a question? Were any of the agricultural organizations, the federation of agriculture or the western pools, consulted before the agreement with Britain was signed?

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS DROPPED FROM THE ORDER PAPER- DECISION OF MR. SPEAKER
Sub-subtopic:   AGREEMENT BETWEEN CANADA AND UNITED KINGDOM
Permalink
LIB

James Angus MacKinnon (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. MacKINNON:

Not as to details of the contract-not as to prices or details-but conversations took place in general terms with representatives of the pools and, I believe, the Canadian federation of agriculture, and almost anybody interested in the problem.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS DROPPED FROM THE ORDER PAPER- DECISION OF MR. SPEAKER
Sub-subtopic:   AGREEMENT BETWEEN CANADA AND UNITED KINGDOM
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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

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

Mr. COLDWELL:

But not as regards quantities or prices?

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS DROPPED FROM THE ORDER PAPER- DECISION OF MR. SPEAKER
Sub-subtopic:   AGREEMENT BETWEEN CANADA AND UNITED KINGDOM
Permalink
LIB

James Angus MacKinnon (Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. MacKINNON:

I do not think that

actual quantities or actual prices were specifically revealed to anybody.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS DROPPED FROM THE ORDER PAPER- DECISION OF MR. SPEAKER
Sub-subtopic:   AGREEMENT BETWEEN CANADA AND UNITED KINGDOM
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IMMIGRATION

ADMISSION TO CANADA OF MEMBERS OF POLISH ARMY FOR AGRICULTURAL PURSUITS


Right Hon. L. S. ST. LAURENT (Acting Prime Minister): I have a statement I should like to make to the house with respect to the admission to Canada of a certain number of members of the Polish armed services to engage in agricultural pursuits. Hon. members are no doubt aware that the government of the United Kingdom, honouring undertakings given somewhat earlier, has obligated itself to find domicile for members of the Polish army which served with the allied forces, who may not choose to return to Poland immediately. It is estimated that in all there were 159,000 men in this army: what portion have not been disbanded are now located partly in Italy and partly in the United Kingdom. It is well known that this Polish army served faithfully and well the common cause of the united nations, that the individual served with courage and distinction, and that most of these men have chosen not to return to Poland at this time. It is perhaps not unnatural that the government of Canada should give some thought to assisting in the establishment in civilian life of these Polish nationals who so staunchly aided the allied cause in securing the victorious outcome of hostilities and who now face peculiar difficulties in regard to demobilization. In the circumstances the government [DOT] has reviewed the situation to see whether we could render any assistance. And we have also considered as related to the first problem of the Immigration establishment of these Polish nationals the fact that at the present time there still exists in Canada an acute shortage of suitable labour for agricultural employment, not only on a seasonal basis but as a more or less permanent situation. In surveying the problems involved the government had the benefit of advice from an interdepartmental committee which was set up under the chairmanship of A. Mac-Namara, deputy minister of labour, and upon which there were representatives also of the Department of External Affairs, of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and of the immigration branch of mines and resources. After due consideration by the government of all the factors involved, the Ministers of Labour and Mines and Resources have recommended to cabinet council that a limited number of single ex-members of these Polish armed forces should be admitted to Canada conditionally for farm work. The recommendation of the two ministers has now been approved by the governor in council P.C. 3112 of July 23, 1946. It authorizes a programme for assisting our farm labour problem, while at the same time sharing to some extent in the solution of an allied problem. I might summarize the main points of the order in council as follows: 1. Four thousand single ex-members of the Polish armed forces who served with the allied forces will be admitted to Canada shortly, on a conditional basis. 2. The men admitted must be qualified for and willing to undertake agricultural employment in Canada. 3. The Minister of Labour is authorized to arrange for representatives of the immigration branch of Mines and Resources, of the Department of Labour and of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to proceed to the United Kingdom and Italy to select the 4,000 suitable men to come to Canada for agricultural employment. 4. The facilities of the national employment service will be utilized for the work of placing these men on farms, but provision is also made for dominion-provincial agreements if it be. found desirable 'to arrange for the assistance of the provinces in connection with the task of placement. 5. Every Polish soldier admitted to Canada will be required to sign an underbaking that for a period of two years following arrival he will accept direction to farm employment and will remain at agricultural work. 6. Steps will be taken to ensure that the men admitted are engaged at current wages and in accordance with living and working conditions prevailing in the locality of employment. 7. The United Kingdom will bear the cost and responsibility of transporting the men to Canada and the Canadian government will bear the cost of distribution within Canada. 8. The order in council sets forth a declaration that each man admitted to Canada under this arrangement who fulfils for two years after arrival the terms and conditions under which he is admitted will then .be granted permanent admission to Canada. It is understood, of course, that any man who fails to carry out his obligation in relation to farm employment, or whose deportation becomes necessary otherwise, shall be returned to the United Kingdom. I wish to lay on the table a copy of order in council P.C. 3112 of July 23, 1946, as referred to in this statement.


PC

Gordon Graydon

Progressive Conservative

Mr. GRAYDON:

Has the minister any

information with respect to whether it will be married or single men who will be brought in?

Mr. ST. LAURENT: The order .in council provides for the admission of 4,000 single men to be chosen because of their qualifications and willingness to engage in agricultural pursuits.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   ADMISSION TO CANADA OF MEMBERS OF POLISH ARMY FOR AGRICULTURAL PURSUITS
Permalink
PC

Gordon Graydon

Progressive Conservative

Mr. GRAYDON:

I take it they will be experienced farm help.

Mr. ST. LAURENT: That is the intention. Representatives of the three departments affected are proceeding overseas to interview the men and to make sure that they will be in position to carry out the undertaking they will be requested to sign.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   ADMISSION TO CANADA OF MEMBERS OF POLISH ARMY FOR AGRICULTURAL PURSUITS
Permalink
CCF

Alistair McLeod Stewart

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

Mr. STEWART (Winnipeg North):

Will these immigrants take precedence over refugees? .

Mr. ST. LAURENT: I am not sure that I understand the hon. member's question. I will consider it and see what form of answer should be made. These persons will be chosen and their transportation to Canada will be arranged as a joint undertaking of the government of the United Kingdom and the government of Canada. I am not in position at the moment to say if it will interfere in any way with the movement of other persons.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   ADMISSION TO CANADA OF MEMBERS OF POLISH ARMY FOR AGRICULTURAL PURSUITS
Permalink
PC

Karl Kenneth Homuth

Progressive Conservative

Mr. HOMUTII:

At least they were allied soldiers.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   ADMISSION TO CANADA OF MEMBERS OF POLISH ARMY FOR AGRICULTURAL PURSUITS
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PC

John Ritchie MacNicol

Progressive Conservative

Mr. MacNICOL:

Do I understand that all these Polish citizens are to be compelled to w'ork on farms? In my experience there have been many Poles working in industry, par-

3S38

War Crimes

ticularly in the iron and steel foundry business, and they were excellent moulders. There have been no better men in the foundry business than the Poles, and I should not like to think that they were to be barred from taking positions in foundries, in which they have demonstrated that they are as good as the best moulders in the country.

Mr. ST. LAURENT: The order in council which I tabled this morning makes provision only for four thousand persons qualified and willing to engage for a period of at least two years in agricultural pursuits.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   ADMISSION TO CANADA OF MEMBERS OF POLISH ARMY FOR AGRICULTURAL PURSUITS
Permalink
PC

Thomas Langton Church

Progressive Conservative

Mr. CHURCH:

Could not agricultural

workers also be brought into Canada from Holland or Great Britain? Men from these countries have done wonderful work in North York.

Mr. ST. LAURENT: I shall have to take . the hon. member's question as a notice of a matter to be given consideration by the government. The announcement I made had to do with the members of the Polish army who found it would be difficult to return to Poland at the present time and for whom the government of the United Kingdom has undertaken to find domicile. The question my hon. friend raises is one which will have to be considered on other grounds than those which motivated the action which I announced this morning.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   ADMISSION TO CANADA OF MEMBERS OF POLISH ARMY FOR AGRICULTURAL PURSUITS
Permalink

ROYAL CANADIAN AIR FORCE

AIRCRAFT MISSING OUT OF KAPUSKASING- ANNOUNCEMENT OF SAFETY OF PILOT

July 25, 1946