Mr. Ken Atkinson (St. Catharines):
Mr. Speaker, in 1991 the government awarded a large contract for the construction of 12 mine countermeasures vessels for the Canadian forces to SNC-Lavalin group with the ships being constructed at Halifax-Dartmouth shipyards.
methyl bromide, a chemical 40 times more destructive to the ozone layer than chlorofluorocarbons.
We urge this government to launch programs that help developing countries eliminate methyl bromides, through increased research and the transfer of technologies.
I along with many people in my riding were disappointed with this announcement as St. Catharines is home to Port Weller Dry Docks which had bid on this contract.
It is time for this government to start practising what it preaches.
There were many critics who claimed that this decision was purely political and that the government had interfered in the ultimate awarding of the contract.
The Auditor General in his latest report has examined this contract and at page 447 states: "We examined the planning phase and options analysis for this project. The department carried out an adequate needs analysis and fully analysed the options for meeting the needs as well as the vessel options presented by the bidding firms".
We are proud of the people of Port Weller and of their record for producing and repairing ships on budget and on time.
I trust that this report of the Auditor General will relieve concerns that this contract was awarded unfairly.
Topic: GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic: GOVERNMENT CONTRACTS