Ms. Sheila Copps (Hamilton East):
Mr. Speaker, if you can believe it, the Government is so afraid to let the world know about its views on free trade that it does not even want to televise the hearings that are held in capitals across the country.
It is bad enough that we must hold the current hearings in Ottawa behind closed doors so that we will not hear, for example, directly, as we did last night in the committee, from members of the Steel Producers Association that, even though we have free trade, they do not intend to pursue American markets because they have enough customers in Canada. Furthermore, they do not have the capacity to sell more steel to the United States.
If the steel industry, which is supposed to be one of the so-called winners in this bad deal, does not intend to pursue expanding steel sales to the United States, what in heaven's name is the reason for pursuing a free trade agreement? The public should have the right to know these facts, Mr. Speaker.
The Government saw that the Meech Lake debates were serious enough to be exposed to the public in full committee televised hearings. Surely an agreement which speaks about the very future of our country is important enough to be televised across Canada both through the hearings in Ottawa as well as in capitals across the country.
Let the people decide. What is the Government afraid of? It knows that this is not a free trade deal, it is a bad Mulroney deal, and let the people see-
Subtopic: CANADA-UNITED STATES TRADE AGREEMENT-TELEVISING OF COMMITTEE HEARINGS URGED