May 28, 1956

LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Defence Production; Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. Howe (Port Arthur):

The fact of my visit to that particular ranch was brought up by one of the devoted followers of the Leader of the Opposition. It was brought up entirely in an attempt to smear my reputation. It has been said'-

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ROCKY POINT NAVAL MAGAZINE, ESQUIMALT, B.C.
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?

Some hon. Members:

Ten o'clock.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ROCKY POINT NAVAL MAGAZINE, ESQUIMALT, B.C.
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Defence Production; Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. Howe (Port Arthur):

-that we do not need to worry about 30-inch pipe.

Progress reported.

Topic:   ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ROCKY POINT NAVAL MAGAZINE, ESQUIMALT, B.C.
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BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

LIB

Walter Edward Harris (Minister of Finance and Receiver General; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. Harris:

We shall continue with this tomorrow.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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At ten o'clock the house adjourned, without question put, pursuant to standing order.



it should have been well known to the government that the decision of the federal power commission would not be handed down in time to meet the construction deadline? The reason is this. A serious effort was made to obtain temporary financing for the western section. I am sure it would have been successful had it not been undertaken in a growing period of tight money. As hon. members know, the Bank of Canada has tightened its restrictions on loans of the type that are required. The same is true in the United States. But I believed until three weeks before the amended resolution was brought into this house that temporary financing would be secured. However, at the last minute the negotiations broke down. They broke down, I think, for reasons that went beyond the bankers who had been dealing with the matter. I think they found that there were objections from the central banking authorities of the countries concerned, and we were faced with that situation. Now, why are we pressing on; why are we pressing this? Well, I do not know; perhaps I get overenthusiastic about a project. I have been working on sizeable projects all my life, and somehow I reach a point in the development when I think a project is important; and if it is a serious enough project I begin to think it is the most important thing in the world and it does seem to me it is important that we do not lose a year in undertaking this pipe line.


PC
LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Defence Production; Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. Howe (Port Arthur):

Well, it is a year, anyway. We are having the greatest possible pressure, as hon. members know, from the province of Alberta, where the situation is becoming almost intolerable. Gas is locked up in the ground; gas is being flared at the refineries, and it is a wasteful and unproductive situation.

We are being pressed by Manitoba, and I may say that Manitoba stands to benefit industrially from low-cost gas to a considerable extent. I come from nothern Ontario. Today northern Ontario is the highest cost fuel area in the world. Through this gas line they will be in the position of having a fuel cost lower than that of industrial Ontario. Well, I know something of the preparations that have been going on there to receive gas. Every community in northern Ontario has made arrangements for the distribution of gas. Industries there are dependent on a supply of natural gas to permit plant expansion. If any area of Canada requires a start on a gas pipe line this year it is northern Ontario.

28, 1956 4405

Northern Ontario Pipe Line Corporation

Hon. members have seen something of the pressure from industrial Ontario for natural gas as expressed by the government of the province of Ontario. No later than last Saturday night the provincial treasurer of Ontario spoke in the Niagara peninsula, and again asserted the absolute necessity of another type of fuel for industrial Ontario. Well, with these pressures reinforcing my own belief that this is a natural resource project that should be pressed to a conclusion as rapidly as possible, I have perhaps given some leadership in the attempt to get this bill enacted by parliament in the 19 sitting days that were left available when the bill was introduced.

I have asserted that if arrangements made last August for pipe are not carried to their conclusion we might not be able to get 34-inch pipe until the last quarter of 1957 or the first quarter of 1958. I have been told by the Leader of the Opposition that this is absolute nonsense. He said that pipe was tight last October, but that today it is easy.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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PC
LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Defence Production; Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. Howe (Port Arthur):

You certainly did.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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PC
LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Defence Production; Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. Howe (Port Arthur):

What did you

say?

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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PC

George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Drew:

I said steel was tight last October.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Defence Production; Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. Howe (Port Arthur):

There is plenty of capacity to roll pipe. When we talk about a tight situation in pipe we mean a tight situation in the material from which pipe is made. There are only about three mills on this continent which can roll steel plate of a width that can be rolled into 34-inch pipe.

I think there is also one in England and one in Germany. I believe those are the five mills in the world today capable of rolling plate from which 34-inch pipe can be rolled.

The Leader of the Opposition said there is no other place for this 34-inch pipe in North America. That is true enough, but there is a tremendous demand for it in the Middle East. If we released our option on that pipe it would be out of the United States just as quickly as it could be loaded on ships for that destination. If the Leader of the Opposition doubts that I will be glad to get him affidavits to that effect. We are fortunate in having that pipe.

I see it is getting on to ten o'clock and I shall not pursue that any further, but there is one subject I should like to discuss, the theory that I invented Trans-Canada Pipe Lines, that I was the man who brought it into being. I probably had as little to do with it in its first two or three years of existence as any man in this house.

Northern Ontario Pipe Line Corporation days of this week in all sorts of shenanigans in order to block the passage of the bill rather than argue against it.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Defence Production; Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. Howe (Port Arthur):

Mr. Chairman-

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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PC
LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Defence Production; Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. Howe (Port Arthur):

-I have spoken three times in this debate, and my purpose in rising now is to attempt to make this a committee where questions that are asked can be answered.

The Leader of the Opposition has asked some questions that should be answered. In the first place, there is a provision which started as a gentleman's agreement and was converted, when three new interests joined the groups sponsoring the pipe line, into an agreement within the group that 51 per cent of all common stock would be offered in Canada and to Canadians. "To Canadians" is not in the draft, but it has to be offered by three very reliable banking houses in this country, and I feel sure that an offer will be made to place that stock of Trans-Canada.

What was the purpose of that? It has been said a good many times I said that through it Canadians would have control. I said just the opposite. I said you could not guarantee control in that way; for there is no way by which you can prevent a purchaser of stock from selling his stock, and there is no guarantee that he will sell his stock to another Canadian.

I made it quite clear that the control of the pipe line would remain in Canada because the pipe line is located in Canada and subject to Canadian law. The province of Alberta has complete control over the gas that will enter the pipe line. The provinces of Canada have complete control over the conditions under which that gas may be sold within the borders of those provinces. The board of transport commissioners have overriding authority concerning the operation of the pipe line, and the government of Canada has complete authority over the export of any gas that may pass through the pipe line and move across an international border.

The reason I have been concerned to see that 51 per cent of the stock would be offered in Canada to Canadians is that if that can be brought about it will be the only pipe line ever built in Canada where that condition has obtained. We have had two pipe lines built in this country and a third is being built today. Well, I hesitate to estimate how much of the common stock of those pipeline companies has been offered in Canada, but I would think that 10 per cent would be a very high proportion of the common stock of any company.

[Mr. Hansell.l

Why is it important to have stock offered in Canada? The Leader of the Opposition-I forget his exact words-said the common stock was the gravy of the enterprise.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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PC

George Alexander Drew (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Drew:

No, I did not use any such expression.

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Defence Production; Minister of Trade and Commerce)

Liberal

Mr. Howe (Port Arthur):

What did you say, or do you remember?

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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May 28, 1956