Search French content
Search English content
Add search criteria
Interventions in the House of Commons
Interventions in Committee
Clear all favourites
Right Hon. Justin Trudeau - 15:00
Mr. Speaker, last week, the trade committee submitted a report on the Canadian steel industry and next week the all-party steel caucus will meet officials in Washington.
In the report the NDP recommends that the Liberals implement measures to encourage the use of Canadian steel in infrastructure projects and government contracts. We also recommend that the government defend our ability to promote the use of Canadian steel when negotiating trade agreements like NAFTA.
I have a simple question. Will the Liberals implement our recommendations to protect our Canadian steel industry before they renegotiate NAFTA?
Mr. Speaker, we take very seriously the responsibility of standing up and defending Canada's interests. We repeatedly do so every time we engage with the American administration, including in my recent conversation with President Trump.
We need to ensure that Initiative 232 excludes Canada. National security investigations have no business looking at Canadian steel when we know the North American steel market is specialized, integrated, and extremely well-functioning.
We will continue to stand with our American partners against illegal practices from around the world, while at the same time defending Canadian steelworkers and their industry.
Kelly Block - 15:02
David Lametti - 14:57
Mr. Speaker, despite the government's announcement, a lot of work remains to be done to save all the forestry jobs once and for all. Just yesterday, Unifor organized a day of action across the country, including in my home of Jonquière. I marched side by side with the workers to acknowledge the importance of the forestry sector, which is central to the Saguenay—Lac-Saint-Jean communities.
The former government left a lot of money on the table in the last agreement. Can the minister assure us that her government will not negotiate a sellout agreement?
Mr. Speaker, we are committed to defending Quebec's forestry sector and we continue to include it in all our negotiations. We strongly oppose the U.S. Department of Commerce's decision to impose unfair countervailing duties. We will continue to work closely with our industry and provincial partners. A negotiated agreement would be the best outcome for Canadians and for the Americans. Nevertheless, we want a good agreement for Canada, not just any agreement.
Mr. Speaker, workers are out in the streets fighting for their jobs because the Liberal government is failing to fix it.
The failure of the Liberals to secure a deal on softwood is seriously threatening forestry jobs. On the eve of NAFTA renegotiations, the lack of a softwood deal is not inspiring much confidence. The Liberals like to talk about their respectful relationship with the U.S. and how they will get the best deal. How can Canadians trust the government to get a good deal on NAFTA when the Liberals continue to fail to get an agreement on softwood lumber?
Mr. Speaker, as we know, the previous Conservative government allowed the agreement to lapse.
We strongly disagree with the U.S. commerce department's decision to impose unfair and punitive duties—
Hon. Geoff Regan - 14:59
Mr. Speaker, we will challenge this U.S. decision in the courts and we will win, as we have done on every past occasion.
The Prime Minister raises softwood lumber with President Trump at every opportunity, just as the minister for global affairs and trade does. However, we want a good agreement for Canada, not just any deal.
James Bezan - 15:00
Right Hon. Justin Trudeau - 14:24
Mr. Speaker, the Premier of Quebec will be in Washington today to talk about the NAFTA negotiations, and many Quebec mayors have already done likewise. Elected officials in Quebec no longer have any confidence in the federal government to conduct these negotiations.
I do not blame them after the government's failure to properly address the softwood lumber and diafiltered milk issues. Unlike those of the federal government, Quebec's priorities are clear: protect good jobs, protect supply management, and resolve the softwood lumber issue.
When will the government tell us what its priorities are for the renegotiation of NAFTA?
Mr. Speaker, I want to commend my friend Philippe Couillard, the Premier of Quebec, who, like all of the other provincial premiers, has committed to working with the American government.
We emphasized how important it is for all levels of government to work together to make the United States understand that Canadians stand united, that we are concerned about its approach, and that we are prepared to strongly defend Canada's interests. That is what we are all going to do, and I commend Premier Couillard for his initiative today in Washington.
Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister needs to stop repeating his talking points and reassure Canadians once and for all.
The Liberals cannot continue to hold Canadians in the dark when it comes to the renegotiation of NAFTA. Workers throughout the country are quickly losing confidence in the Liberal government and its ability to negotiate a good trade deal in their interest. In less than a month, the U.S. will reveal its final priorities, and still, deafening silence from the government side.
Canadians deserve a government that will stand up and fight for their jobs, so when will the government release its plans on the renegotiation of NAFTA?
Mr. Speaker, we very much look forward to sitting down with the American side after August 18, when the Americans have permission to sit down and start negotiating. Until then, we have made it very clear that our priorities are defending Canada's interests. Whether it be in softwood, whether it be in auto, or whether it be in dairy and supply management, we will always stand up and defend Canada's interests. We will not, however, talk in great detail about our negotiation strategy. Canadians know we will defend their interests. We will continue to fight hard for Canadian jobs and for growth for the middle class, because that is what Canadians expect of us.
Matthew Dubé - 14:27
Hon. Amarjeet Sohi - 15:07
Mr. Speaker, forestry workers are demonstrating across Quebec today to call on the government to negotiate a fair and balanced agreement on softwood lumber. That may seem obvious, but the forestry sector has learned not to trust Ottawa.
Arguing over guarantees has cost weeks of work for workers, who are more than ready for a bit of stability.
Will the government make a solemn promise to refuse to sign any sellout agreement that could hurt forestry workers?
Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the question because it is a chance to remind the House of the significance of the measures that we have undertaken to make sure, both in the short term and in the long term, that the forestry industry is respected in Canada.
That includes $605 million from the Export Development Corporation. It includes very timely measures to expand export markets. That includes taking the leaders of the industry in Quebec to China to begin to make the argument that our wood is the best wood in the world.
We are very proud of that initiative. We are very proud of how we have stood up for the forestry—
Hon. Geoff Regan - 15:08
Right Hon. Justin Trudeau - 14:46
Mr. Speaker, on Monday, the U.S. dairy industry formally asked trade officials to come after the Canadian dairy industry in NAFTA renegotiations. New Democrats have repeatedly stood in the House highlighting trade attacks on our supply-managed dairy industry.
With the U.S. blaming Canadian farmers for their own overproduction, we need more than vague assurances from the government. It is clear to everyone that dairy will be a top priority for the U.S. administration. Instead of the same meaningless talking points, will the Prime Minister draw a red line and commit to no expanded market access?
Mr. Speaker, it was a Liberal government that created supply management over 40 years ago. The Liberal Party has always defended supply management, and we always will defend supply management because it protects our consumers, it protects our producers, and it creates opportunities for growth and security in our production of dairy products.
We have been able to sign significant trade deals internationally, like NAFTA and CETA, while protecting our dairy industry and supply management. We are going to continue to do just that.
Ruth Ellen Brosseau - 14:48