March 7, 1979

REQUEST FOR REPORT ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNITED STATES

LIB

Herbert Eser (Herb) Gray

Liberal

Hon. Herb Gray (Windsor West):

Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Deputy Prime Minister in his capacity as the minister with responsibilities for international trade negotiations. Would he report to the House today or at an early date on the trade negotiations with the United States which some journalists have reported could be leading to a free trade arrangement with that country?

If negotiations are moving toward such an arrangement, can he assure us that there will be no final commitment on it until there has been a full study of it by the House, including public hearings by one of its committees on the implications for our industry and its workers and the existence of adequate safeguards for them under any such arrangement?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR REPORT ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNITED STATES
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LIB

Allan Joseph MacEachen (Deputy Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Hon. Allan J. MacEachen (Deputy Prime Minister and President of the Privy Council):

I can give the hon. member

March 7, 1979

Oral Questions CONSUMER AFFAIRS

an assurance that there have not been discussions with the United States with a view to establishing a free trade area.

The Minister of Finance met with Ambassador Strauss on February 23 to discuss and, if possible, settle a number of outstanding bilateral issues between Canada and the United States within the over-all context of the multilateral trade negotiations. I can report that progress has been made. The Minister of Finance is again meeting with Mr. Strauss on his current visit to Washington and, hopefully, further progress will be made. But I would again underline that these discussions are within the context of the trade negotiations and whatever arrangements are reached with the United States would obviously be multilateralized, if I can use that dreadful word, under the most favoured nation arrangements.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR REPORT ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNITED STATES
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PC

Charles Joseph Clark (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Joe Clark (Leader of the Opposition):

The Deputy Prime Minister has indicated that progress has been made in these discussions, discussions which significantly affect Canada's trading situation. Will he give us an undertaking that the details of what he calls progress will be made available to the House of Commons either by way of a statement from himself or from his colleague, the Minister of Finance, which would make public information on arrangements which will materially affect Canada's future?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR REPORT ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNITED STATES
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LIB

Allan Joseph MacEachen (Deputy Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. MacEachen:

Yes, Mr. Speaker, it will certainly be the intention of the government to make public the details of these trade negotiations when they are completed. We are at present attempting to bring to a conclusion our discussions with the United States and we still have outstanding questions to settle with the European Community and with Japan. When all has been completed, we shall be making the details public, but it is impossible at the moment to be certain when that will be.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR REPORT ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNITED STATES
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PC

Charles Joseph Clark (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Clark:

We were given to understand by the government that these arrangements are expected to be completed by the end of this month. The Deputy Prime Minister spoke earlier about specific progress having been made. Can he tell us whether to this point any firm agreements have been reached on specific matters in the course of those discussions?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR REPORT ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNITED STATES
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LIB

Allan Joseph MacEachen (Deputy Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. MacEachen:

No, Mr. Speaker. All these discussions are, first of all, ad referendum to the cabinet and the cabinet will have the final word as to what is proposed by those of us who are involved in the negotiations. We shall not be able to reach a conclusion on all facets of the discussions until we are satisfied that the result is a balanced one for Canada, and we cannot determine that until all the cards are in place.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR REPORT ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNITED STATES
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PC

Charles Joseph Clark (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Clark:

Is the Deputy Prime Minister telling us, then, that no details of these discussions presently under way with the United States will be made available to parliament or to the people of Canada until after an election?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR REPORT ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNITED STATES
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LIB

Allan Joseph MacEachen (Deputy Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. MacEachen:

No, Mr. Speaker, I am not saying that.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FOR REPORT ON NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNITED STATES
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PROFITS OF AUTOMOBILE MANUFACTURERS-RESULTANT PRICE INCREASES

NDP

John R. Rodriguez

New Democratic Party

Mr. John Rodriguez (Nickel Belt):

Mr. Speaker, my question is directed to the Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs. It arises from the recent Reisman report and the previous Arthur report which showed auto manufacturing companies were getting higher profits on Canadian car sales than on sales in the United States.

In view of the latest CPI figures which showed that car and truck prices have increased by 11.2 per cent over last year, can the minister tell us what he intends to do to roll back this increase which is obviously inflationary?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   PROFITS OF AUTOMOBILE MANUFACTURERS-RESULTANT PRICE INCREASES
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LIB

William Warren Allmand (Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs)

Liberal

Hon. Warren Allmand (Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs):

As the hon. member knows, during the past three years the Anti-Inflation Board was dealing with prices, profits, wages, and so on, and it has not been my responsibility to watch this aspect of the automotive industry.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   PROFITS OF AUTOMOBILE MANUFACTURERS-RESULTANT PRICE INCREASES
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NDP

John R. Rodriguez

New Democratic Party

Mr. Rodriguez:

The minister well knows that the controls which were in effect under the AIB were very effective when it came to controlling wages. Now we have a situation where price increases in this field amount to 11.2 per cent. Is the minister prepared to say to this House and to the country that he is unable to do anything about increasing prices in the field? If he is saying that, will he at least be honest and tell us so?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   PROFITS OF AUTOMOBILE MANUFACTURERS-RESULTANT PRICE INCREASES
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LIB

William Warren Allmand (Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. Allmand:

Mr. Speaker, I can tell the House that we are opposed to further controls at this time. The New Democratic Party now seems to want controls, which its members voted against three years ago.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   PROFITS OF AUTOMOBILE MANUFACTURERS-RESULTANT PRICE INCREASES
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IMMIGRATION

PC

Arthur Jacob (Jake) Epp

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Jake Epp (Provencher):

Mr. Speaker, my question is directed to the Minister of Employment and Immigration. Perhaps this does not happen in the House very often, but I want to thank the minister for the agreement with the churches regarding refugees coming from Southeast Asia.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   TRAINING PROGRAMS FOR REFUGEES
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?

Some hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   TRAINING PROGRAMS FOR REFUGEES
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PC

Arthur Jacob (Jake) Epp

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Epp:

On Friday last the minister was at a federal-provincial meeting regarding the minimum and maximum number of refugee landings which would be possible for 1979. At that meeting the provinces asked the minister to give specific details as to federal commitments on language training and infrastructure for refugee landings.

I would like to ask the minister whether those matters were resolved and, specifically, whether the government has committed itself to increasing the number of refugee landings from

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March 7, 1979

Oral Questions

Southeast Asia in addition to the ones to which the churches have now committed themselves.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   TRAINING PROGRAMS FOR REFUGEES
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LIB

Jack Sydney George (Bud) Cullen (Minister of Employment and Immigration)

Liberal

Hon. Bud Cullen (Minister of Employment and Immigration):

Mr. Speaker, first and foremost, I thank the hon. member for his commendation, not so much of me or the government but of the groups which are participating in private sponsorship. They were quick off the mark and the central committee of the Mennonite Church was the first group with which I signed an agreement just last Monday.

Insofar as the numbers are concerned, I had a good discussion with my provincial colleagues on Friday. The numbers which will come under private sponsorship will be in addition to those sponsored by the federal and provincial governments.

Insofar as language training is concerned, the same rules are applicable. Where an individual or both adult individuals in a family go into the work force, language training is the responsibility of the federal government. If, however, only one member of a family enters the labour force, language training for that individual is provided by the federal government but language training for the other spouse and the children of the family is a provincial responsibility. It is one of the provincial responsibilities with regard to participation in refugee and immigration movement.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   TRAINING PROGRAMS FOR REFUGEES
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PC

Arthur Jacob (Jake) Epp

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Epp:

Under the provisions of the new Immigration Act, the minister must file with parliament the annual target of the government with regard to the number of landings for the coming year. The minister put that target at 100,000 for the present year. If he is contemplating increasing the number of refugee landings beyond what he originally proposed and then expanded, are those landings still within the 100,000 total annual flow or has the minister adjusted the 100,000 as well?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   TRAINING PROGRAMS FOR REFUGEES
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March 7, 1979