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View Simon-Pierre Savard-Tremblay Profile
BQ (QC)
Mr. Speaker, the government is going to have to answer to Quebec's 10,000 aluminum industry workers with regard to the new NAFTA.
This new agreement, which was negotiated in secret, cannot be described as a win. Once again, the Prime Minister was unable to protect the workers of one of Quebec's iconic industries. Our nine aluminum smelters produce nearly three tonnes of primary aluminum, or 60% of the total North American production. Our expertise is recognized around the world.
Our industry, which produces the cleanest aluminum in the world, was sacrificed in favour of steel. The government is bragging about the fact that 70% of the materials used in auto manufacturing will now come from North America, when that percentage was already at 62.5%. However, although the agreement clearly indicates that all steel manufacturing processes must take place in one of the three countries for the steel to be considered North American, Ottawa, unlike the U.S. President, failed to obtain the same assurances for our aluminum. As a result, Mexico, which does not produce any aluminum and must therefore import 100% of its aluminum, will be able to continue buying cheaper aluminum from China and processing it before exporting it to the United States labelled as North American aluminum.
Over the course of summer 2019, we saw that the importation of aluminum wheels from China dropped in the United States but rose dramatically in Mexico. During that time, Mexico's exports of processed aluminum wheels to the United States more than doubled.
We have nothing to gain from this agreement, which may even result in the outsourcing of our industry. That is why we are requesting an emergency debate on this issue.
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