May 16, 1916 (12th Parliament, 6th Session)


George Henry Barnard

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. G. H. BARNARD (Victoria, B.C.):

I wish to say just a word or two on this matter, and to join my voice with those of the hon. member for Pictou (Mr. Macdonald) and the hon. member for St. John (Mr. Pugsley) in urging upon the Government the desirability of giving some aid to shipbuilding. It is a very vital matter with us on the Pacific seaboard, particularly since the war; although I may say that the shortage of tonnage was felt on that coast even before the waT commenced. As 'the gentlemen of the House are undoubtedly aware the interests of the province of British Columbia are very vitally bound up with the prosperity of the lumber trade. The great difficulty with the lumber trade there is to get overseas tonnage. There is no doubt that probably the finest stand of timber left in the world is found within ihe confines of the province of British Columbia. The difficulty we find there is that nearly all the ships that are in the lumbercarrying trade are under charter, and that the charters are controlled by San Francisco interests, which, naturally, send them to their own lumber mills on Puget Sound, with the result that our mills stand idle on

account of the difficulty of getting tonnage for the export trade.
I find that the Government of British Columbia has, within the last few days, brought down a Bill in the Legislature for the very purpose of aiding the shipbuilding business. The contemplation is, I think, largely to build wooden ships out of good British Columbia timber. We have demonstrated beyond question that ocean-going vessels of the very finest kind can be built out of timber on the coast.

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