Mr. Claude Duplain (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.)
Mr. Speaker, I would just like to make a few points concerning certain aspects of what the hon. member has said, particularly about the problems facing farmers.
Farmers are not being confronted by certain problems, but have certain problems that have to be solved, and which the government is in fact in the process of solving.
One hundred days after this extraordinary and harmful crisis began—one that makes no sense whatsoever—the minister succeeded in reopening the border. The government initially invested $460 million to help farmers, and then another $50 million or so. I think that an extension of some five or six days was given because of the power outages in Ontario.
We are currently negotiating protocols with Japan and Mexico. As for the agreements, we are involved in daily discussions with the United States with a view to fully reopening the border. It is partially open, I must point out, which has allowed 8 million tonnes of beef across so far.
The opposition must realize one thing: this is the first time in the world that borders have been successfully reopened within 100 days.
In this connection, I am curious to know whether the hon. member is in the least aware of the efforts that have been made. Judging from what he has said, he seems to be indicating that nothing at all has been done. I have, however, given some examples of efforts that have been made and could give dozens more.
Does he realize that efforts have been made by this government, with a view to fully reopening the border?