February 12, 1926 (15th Parliament, 1st Session)


James Dew Chaplin

Conservative (1867-1942)

Air. CHAPLIN (Lincoln):

Always for the Same reason-the blighting hands of the government are laid upon the business of the country with disastrous results. These hon. gentlemen made a treaty with France and children really could make a better treaty. We got the worst of it in the treaty with Belgium. That was natural, because having given it to one we must give it to the other. In making the French treaty we opened the door to ten other countries and' gave them the same; terms. This government reduced the duty upon a long line of luxuries which cculd well afford to pay. They reduced the duties on those luxuries and allowed them to enter into this country, with a loss of millions of dollars of revenue, and that was all done in the interests of the poor agriculturists; the treaty was made for the farmers particularly.
I want to draw the attention of the House to the difference between our trade with Germany and our trade with France. We have no treaty with Germany. Three years ago we sold to Germany for the twelve months ending December 23, in round figures thirteen million dollars worth of commodities. We are selling them to-day without a treaty thirty-one million dollars' worth. We bought from them four million dollars' worth in 1923 and we are now purchasing nine millions, so that we have a balance of trade of over twenty-two million in our favour, whereas owing to our treaty with France to-day this is the result. We started out in 1923 with a trade balance in our favour, and now we have a trade balance against us of seven million dollars. That justifies me in saying that when this government makes a treaty the effect is like a blight on a tree.
Now we come to the Netherlands. I hope the minister will not claim anything for his treaty with that country. We made a treaty with the Netherlands, but I am afraid the blight will get there too, because they are mighty good customers. Here is the position of the Netherlands' business to-day. Three years ago we sold them eight million dollars worth, and1 now we are selling them twenty-two million dollars worth and this business is goit practically without a treaty. We buy from them about five or six million dollars worth and we have a fine balance of
The Address-Mr. Chaplin (Lincoln)
trade. We have made a treaty with them, and heaven forbid that it should tjurn out anything like the other treaties. The returns I am reading from, as I said before, are published by the Department of Trade andi Commerce.
The minister further read us a few testimonials from different papers and he read something to show us that everything was all right in Denmark and going fine. The minister has in his possession some petitions from the west. Unfortunately, I do not have copies of these, but I see from the Regina Leader of the 6th February that the Saskatchewan Co-operative Creameries, Limited, have sent a very strongly worded resolution, passed by their board of directors, expressing the wish that the government would rescind this treaty. The government also have in their hands a resolution and notes of minutes from another corporation out there, the Saskatchewan Dairy Association, endorsing the action of this other corporation and asking for the same thing. It would be a good idea if the minister would table those in the House so that we might see what value is placed upon this treaty by these people in the west. Of course, the minister says that the United States have a duty of eight cents per pound on butter and that it does not get them anywhere; that it does not raise the price of butter. Is that the usual free trade argument that a duty of eight cents per pound in the United States does not raise the price of butter there? I think not. My friends to my left will agree with me that any time you put a duty on an article, you are going to hit the consumer by the amount of the duty, and then some, because the fellow that produces gets something too. I think I can prove all that from the Farmers' book which I took the trouble to bring here. I think I can prove it to them right out of their own book, and yet we find the minister saying that if you put a duty on butter, you will not raise the price. My idea is to put a duty on butter and raise the price by keeping out the other stuff.

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