March 10, 1960

PRESENCE IN GALLERY OF LEADER OF TANGANYIKA NATIONAL UNION

PC

John George Diefenbaker (Prime Minister)

Progressive Conservative

Right Hon. J. G. Diefenbaker (Prime Minister):

Mr. Speaker, by leave of the house I should like to mention the fact that present in the Speaker's gallery today is Mr. Julius K. Nyerere the distinguished leader of the Tanganyika African National Union. This distinguished statesman from Africa has recently completed a speaking tour of the United States under the auspices of the state department, and those who were privileged to hear him speak today at the Canadian Club realize the power and capacity of our visitor.

We are happy that he has been able to spend this short time in Ottawa, and on his return to Tanganyika-I am sure I speak for hon. members in all parts of the house-we wish him to convey to his people the greetings of the Canadian people.

Topic:   PRESENCE IN GALLERY OF LEADER OF TANGANYIKA NATIONAL UNION
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LIB

Lester Bowles Pearson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Liberal

Hon. L. B. Pearson (Leader of the Opposition):

I should like to associate our party with the words of welcome which the Prime Minister has just uttered to our distinguished visitor. All Canadians are following the progress of the African peoples to independence under law with sympathy and support; especially, if I may say so, with regard to those peoples who have been under British colonial rule and who, when they achieve independence, will we hope become nations within the British commonwealth.

Topic:   PRESENCE IN GALLERY OF LEADER OF TANGANYIKA NATIONAL UNION
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CCF

Hazen Robert Argue

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

Mr. Hazen Argue (Assiniboia):

I should like to add on behalf of the C.C.F. party our word of welcome to our distinguished guest. 1 think one of the most hopeful developments in the world today is the emergence of independent free nations in Africa. I associate myself with the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition in heartily welcoming our guest and looking forward to the development of Tanganyika within the commonwealth of nations.

Topic:   PRESENCE IN GALLERY OF LEADER OF TANGANYIKA NATIONAL UNION
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BRIDGES

JACQUES CARTIER BRIDGE, MONTREAL-REQUEST THAT COMMITTEE RESUME SITTINGS

PC

George Harris Hees (Minister of Transport)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. George H. Hees (Minister of Transport):

Mr. Speaker, on Wednesday, February 24 last, I advised the house that the investigation into possible criminal activities

in connection with the collection of tolls on Jacques Cartier bridge had advanced to the point where it appeared that criminal charges should be laid, and that accordingly the Minister of Justice had appointed counsel to assess the evidence, to advise as to the course of further criminal investigations, and to draft charges that should be laid. At the same time I announced that as soon as charges had been laid the government would ask the committee on railways, canals and telegraph lines to resume its hearings immediately and make the fullest possible examination of all other aspects of the matter.

The Minister of Justice has now been advised that it may take considerably longer than was first anticipated to bring the matter before the courts because of the time and care that must be taken in the weighing of the evidence. The government is therefore of the view that the hearings of the committee to examine other aspects of the situation should not be indefinitely delayed, and has asked that the committee be called to meet for that purpose on Monday morning next, March 14.

Topic:   BRIDGES
Subtopic:   JACQUES CARTIER BRIDGE, MONTREAL-REQUEST THAT COMMITTEE RESUME SITTINGS
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EXTERNAL AFFAIRS


On the orders of the day:


LIB

Lester Bowles Pearson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Liberal

Hon. L. B. Pearson (Leader of the Opposition):

Mr. Speaker, I should like to ask the Prime Minister whether an invitation has been extended to Mr. Ben Gurion, the courageous and indomitable prime minister of Israel, to visit Canada on his current tour of the United States.

Topic:   BRIDGES
Subtopic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Sub-subtopic:   INQUIRY AS TO VISIT BY PRIME MINISTER OF ISRAEL
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Prime Minister)

Progressive Conservative

Right Hon. J. G. Diefenbaker (Prime Minister):

Mr. Speaker, no invitation was extended to Mr. Ben Gurion; not that he would not have been welcomed to this country, but because my understanding was that the circumstances of his visit would not permit further days to be spent over and above those contemplated in the original plans.

Topic:   BRIDGES
Subtopic:   EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
Sub-subtopic:   INQUIRY AS TO VISIT BY PRIME MINISTER OF ISRAEL
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REQUEST FOR STATEMENT RESPECTING

EXTENSION OF AGREEMENT


On the orders of the day:


CCF

Hazen Robert Argue

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

Mr. Hazen Argue (Assiniboia):

Mr. Speaker, I should like to direct a question to the Minister of Trade and Commerce. I wonder whether the minister could report further to

Inquiries of the Ministry the house on the progress of the Canadian-U.S.S.R. trade agreement. Would the minister care to comment on a statement in this morning's Globe and Mail to the effect that an agreement is about to be signed which is to cover the annual purchase by Russia of some 15 million bushels of wheat from Canada?

Topic:   REQUEST FOR STATEMENT RESPECTING
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF AGREEMENT
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PC

Gordon Minto Churchill (Minister of Trade and Commerce; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Progressive Conservative Party House Leader)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Gordon Churchill (Minister of Trade and Commerce):

Mr. Speaker, I think we are all very much interested in this particular matter, and all are hopeful that a trade agreement with Russia can be signed. The negotiations have been proceeding for over a year, and they have not been without some difficulties.

We have been endeavouring to secure a basis for trade which would provide for adequate sales of Canadian goods and products including wheat in the Soviet union, which is a state trading country, and in return we would offer, as was done in the past, most favoured nation treatment for Soviet goods entering the open Canadian market.

A number of possibilities have been carefully examined by both sides. In recent months proposals have been made to us by the U.S.S.R. including as one element the offer, subject to certain conditions, to exchange goods on a 2 to 1 basis in Canada's favour. We have considered these proposals and made our reply, and now await the reaction of the Soviet government. I consider that we are now close to an understanding, and again I express the hope that the matter will be brought to a conclusion very quickly.

Topic:   REQUEST FOR STATEMENT RESPECTING
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF AGREEMENT
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CCF

Hazen Robert Argue

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

Mr. Argue:

Mr. Speaker, a supplementary question. Do I take it from the minister's reply that Canada is prepared to make some kind of commitment to buy from the Soviet union at least 50 per cent of the value of the goods she buys from us?

Topic:   REQUEST FOR STATEMENT RESPECTING
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF AGREEMENT
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PC

Gordon Minto Churchill (Minister of Trade and Commerce; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Progressive Conservative Party House Leader)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Churchill:

No, the Canadian government cannot make a commitment as a government to buy from Russia. Russia is a state trading nation and we are not, and that makes quite a difference.

Topic:   REQUEST FOR STATEMENT RESPECTING
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF AGREEMENT
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CCF

Hazen Robert Argue

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

Mr. Argue:

A further supplementary question. Is any assurance of any kind being given the Soviet union that Canada's importers will be buying up to this proportion of goods from the Soviet union?

Topic:   REQUEST FOR STATEMENT RESPECTING
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF AGREEMENT
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PC

Gordon Minto Churchill (Minister of Trade and Commerce; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Progressive Conservative Party House Leader)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Churchill:

It is very difficult to give an assurance of that nature, Mr. Speaker, because it would be up to Canadian businessmen, using their own good judgment, as to what they import into this country.

Topic:   REQUEST FOR STATEMENT RESPECTING
Subtopic:   EXTENSION OF AGREEMENT
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March 10, 1960