April 6, 1967

VACANCY

LIB

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

I have the honour to inform the house that I have received from the hon. member for Outremont-Saint-Jean (Mr. La-montagne) written declaration of his intention to resign his seat in the House of Commons.

Pursuant to section 6 of the House of Commons Act, chapter 143 of the Revised Statutes of Canada, 1952, I have directed my warrant to the Chief Electoral Officer for an issue of a writ for election of a new member for the said electoral district.

Topic:   VACANCY
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VETERANS AFFAIRS

VIMY RIDGE SERVICE-REPORTED REFUSAL OF FRANCE TO PARTICIPATE


On the orders of the day: Right Hon. J. G. Diefenbaker (Leader of the Opposition): Mr. Speaker, I address my question to the Prime Minister. It arises out of press reports to the effect that the Republic of France has refused to participate in the guard of honour and other observances at the fiftieth anniversary service at Vimy Ridge on April 9. Will the Prime Minister indicate what explanation there may be for this incomprehensible act on the part of France in view of Canada's tremendous sacrifice, and whether any representations were made to France? It seems impossible to understand why that country would not be represented on an occasion commemorating a battle that helped mark Canada's emergence as a nation and in which Canada poured out its blood and treasure.


LIB

Lester Bowles Pearson (Prime Minister)

Liberal

Right Hon. L. B. Pearson (Prime Minister):

Mr. Speaker, preparations for this special Canadian ceremony to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the battle of Vimy Ridge, which is a landmark not only of the war, but, as the right hon. gentleman has said, in our history, are primarily the responsibility of my colleague the Minister of Veterans Affairs. I can say that the preparations have been carried out with the full co-operation of

the French authorities. The French government has appointed official representatives both for the ceremony and for the reception of His Royal Highness Prince Philip on his arrival. I believe there are no grounds for suggesting that the French government has not given adequate recognition to this observance.

Topic:   VETERANS AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   VIMY RIDGE SERVICE-REPORTED REFUSAL OF FRANCE TO PARTICIPATE
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

Would the Prime Minister say why the usual French guard of honour for such events is being denied by that country?

Topic:   VETERANS AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   VIMY RIDGE SERVICE-REPORTED REFUSAL OF FRANCE TO PARTICIPATE
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LIB

Lester Bowles Pearson (Prime Minister)

Liberal

Mr. Pearson:

Some of the details in some of the reports about this matter are not quite accurate. I hope shortly to be able to give the house a detailed account of the exact ceremonies that will take place at that time, and the extent of French participation in them.

Topic:   VETERANS AFFAIRS
Subtopic:   VIMY RIDGE SERVICE-REPORTED REFUSAL OF FRANCE TO PARTICIPATE
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NATIONAL REVENUE

STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES


On the orders of the day:


NDP

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

New Democratic Party

Mr. T. C. Douglas (Burnaby-Coquiilam):

Mr. Speaker, may I direct a question to the Minister of National Revenue. Last November the minister indicated that he had received a report from the Department of Justice in connection with the importation of some 10,000 Volkswagen cars by the Studebaker company. Has his department now decided whether these cars properly came within the Canada-United States auto agreement, or whether they are subject to taxation under the general tariff provisions?

Topic:   NATIONAL REVENUE
Subtopic:   STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES
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LIB

Edgar John Benson (President of the Treasury Board; Minister of National Revenue)

Liberal

Hon. E. J. Benson (Minister of National Revenue and President of the Treasury Board):

Mr. Speaker, this is a very difficult question to answer. We have received advice from the Department of Justice and are acting on that advice. I can assure my hon. friend that we will act within the law as it exists, but I may not indicate to him what we are doing with respect to a particular taxpayer's affairs.

Topic:   NATIONAL REVENUE
Subtopic:   STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES
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NDP

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

New Democratic Party

Mr. Douglas:

A supplementary question, Mr. Speaker. I am not asking the minister to indicate what he is doing with respect to a particular taxpayer, but in view of the fact

April 6, 1967

Inquiries of the Ministry that other auto companies must know what they are entitled to do under the Canada-United States auto agreement, have the minister and the Department of Justice decided whether it is proper for an auto company under the provisions of that agreement to bring into Canada cars manufactured by another company?

Topic:   NATIONAL REVENUE
Subtopic:   STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES
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LIB

Edgar John Benson (President of the Treasury Board; Minister of National Revenue)

Liberal

Mr. Benson:

Mr. Speaker, we have made our decision in this matter, and I am sure all the auto companies know what our thinking in this type of matter is and how we will treat them as individual companies. But as my hon. friend knows I may not discuss the affairs of an individual company in the House of Commons.

Topic:   NATIONAL REVENUE
Subtopic:   STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES
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PC

Michael Starr (Official Opposition House Leader; Progressive Conservative Party House Leader)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Michael Slarr (Ontario):

Mr. Speaker, I wish to direct a supplementary question to the right hon. Prime Minister. In view of the extensive lay-offs that have taken place in the automobile industry, the fact that the auto manufacturers have approached the government asking that they be relieved of their full responsibility under this trade pact, and that the Canadian Manufacturers' Association has asked for a complete study and review of this agreement, would the Prime Minister now think it wise to refer this auto agreement to a standing committee of the House of Commons so all the facts may be brought out and an accurate assessment made of this agreement?

Topic:   NATIONAL REVENUE
Subtopic:   STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES
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LIB

Lester Bowles Pearson (Prime Minister)

Liberal

Right Hon. L. B. Pearson (Prime Minister):

Mr. Speaker, I certainly think it wise to look carefully into my hon. friend's question, and I shall do that.

Topic:   NATIONAL REVENUE
Subtopic:   STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Right Hon. J. G. Diefenbaker (Leader of the Opposition):

A supplementary question, Mr. Speaker. The Minister of National Revenue has said he must not give details of individual cases. I presume he has read the report of the Auditor General, who says that under this scheme Studebaker owes Canada $2 million in income tax. Is the government in agreement with the Auditor General?

Topic:   NATIONAL REVENUE
Subtopic:   STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES
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LIB

Edgar John Benson (President of the Treasury Board; Minister of National Revenue)

Liberal

Mr. Benson:

No, Mr. Speaker. As a matter of fact the situation with regard to a particular corporation, which the Auditor General did not indicate in his report as the Studebaker corporation, has been examined carefully by my department. We will deal with the particular people involved, as we must deal with them, according to the law as approved by the parliament of Canada.

Topic:   NATIONAL REVENUE
Subtopic:   STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

Does the minister suggest that there is any other automobile company which owes $2 million for the importation of these automobiles?

Topic:   NATIONAL REVENUE
Subtopic:   STUDEBAKER CORPORATION-INDEBTEDNESS FOR CUSTOMS DUTIES
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April 6, 1967