Mr. Rolland Dion (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of State for Economic and Regional Development and Minister of State for Science and Technology):
Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to have this opportunity to answer the question put by the Member for Kootenay-West (Mr. Kristiansen).
Mr. Speaker, the report ordered after the Speech from the Throne last December was published on May 29 and contains, of course, a number of recommendations. Tonight I would like to comment on the Government's position for a number of years on co-operative movements. In this connection, I would like to quote some resolutions adopted at the National Conven-
June 18, 1984
tion in Winnipeg in July 1980. At the time, one resolution from Saskatchewan urged and I quote:
(a) That the Liberal Party of Canada again recognize the uniqueness and desirability of the co-operative approach to organizing a large part of Canadian activities; and
(b) That the Government of Canada consult often with co-operatives, encouraging them to expand and promoting a strengthening of the role they play in this country.
Mr. Speaker, in the last two years the Government has responded to a number of initiatives from the co-operative sector. It has provided financial assistance to Canadian CoOperative Implements Ltd., a farm machinery manufacturing company located in Winnipeg. By amending the Financial Administration Act, the Government-I think this is very important, and I am referring to a legislative measure that may not have received much publicity but was still very important-the Government removed a number of obstacles which for quite some time had prevented the Caisses populates and credit unions from providing financial services,
including holding federal Government deposits. The Caisses populaires and credit unions are co-operatives. The government has provided readier access to other Government services by making changes in administrative methods. The Government has always made a point of consulting with the private sector and co-ops. I am thinking particularly of the consultations on the Budget held by the Minister of Finance (Mr. Lalonde) and I am referring to the last two Budgets of the present Minister who held a number of consultations with the private sector, including co-operatives.
Mr. Speaker, I think the Government of Canada is very sensitized to the co-operative movement. It has demonstrated this in the past and it will surely continue to do so in the years to come.
Topic: PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic: CO-OPERATIVES-TASK FORCE RECOMMENDATION ON WORKERS' CO-OPERATIVES. (B) CONSULTATION WITH CANADIAN LABOUR CONGRESS REPRESENTATIVES