Interventions in Committee
 
 
 
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View Dean Allison Profile
CPC (ON)
View Dean Allison Profile
2019-06-18 8:56
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
To our witnesses, as our chair mentioned, thanks for coming on such short notice.
I have three questions. I have a lot more, but maybe I'll get three questions in.
Mr. Wilson and Mr. Kingston, just give me your thoughts. You guys talked about being in the States recently. Where do you guys feel the Democrats are after having those conversations? The sense we get from reading the paper is that they're nowhere close. We appreciate the importance of getting this thing ratified, but the challenge is that it doesn't appear that they're anywhere near.
What arguments can be made to say that the Democrats want to give Trump a victory on this thing? Do you have any thoughts on that based on your conversations with Democrats?
View Dean Allison Profile
CPC (ON)
View Dean Allison Profile
2019-06-18 8:58
I get it. They're saying they'll get there, but they want to make a sea of changes. The challenge with us getting too far ahead of this thing is what changes they want. I could ask more questions on that, but I have to get to the eggs and the wine.
Mr. Pelissero, just to recap, on access you talked about an additional 11 million dozen eggs and 51 million under the WTO. Do we get reciprocal access to the U.S. based on that?
View Dean Allison Profile
CPC (ON)
View Dean Allison Profile
2019-06-18 8:59
Okay, good.
I only have two minutes left. The time goes by too quickly.
Mr. Paszkowski, I understand that you guys are saying you support CUSMA, in terms of how it is. The challenge you have is around the WTO challenge right now with Australia. As you said, we've seen over 400 wineries grow in the last decade or so, since we had a chance to look at VQA being excise-free.
Talk to us about the concern. This is a legitimate concern about what may happen under WTO in terms of our wine market. Explain that one more time.
View Randy Hoback Profile
CPC (SK)
Thank you, Chair. Thank you, witnesses, for being here this morning.
I'm going to start by saying that the Conservatives are going to support this deal. We've already indicated that. We worked with the Liberals all the way through this and we've had our ups and downs, but we still have lots of concerns. We're still hearing a lot from industries within Canada about concerns that are coming up.
I'll use the example of fabricated steel. They're looking at tariffs coming on August 1, until USTR will decide, and then we'll see what that looks like. We still have no resolution on softwood lumber; that was not addressed in NAFTA. We still have buy American provisions sitting there in the background, which are going to have implications for our industries.
How do you guys square that? I know you want stability and bankability, but in the same breath, are you really getting that in this deal?
I'll start off with you, Brian, and then go to Mathew.
View Randy Hoback Profile
CPC (SK)
What concerns me, like fabricated steel, the government's been preaching about how it got rid of the tariffs and everybody thinks they're all gone, but what they've really been telling us is that these guys have been trying to meet with this government to address this. They've been down in the U.S. a substantial number of times, and there's no response. Nobody's mentioning it, and nobody's highlighting it. Everybody's closing their eyes, plugging their ears, saying, “We'll get through this and then we'll deal with that later.”
I also have to deal with the fact of the tweets. I almost think EDC needs to offer insurance for tweets because of the unpredictability and instability those create. How do you take that out of the marketplace? Maybe that's an option they should look at.
Dan, you talked about the vintners and the excise tax. How many more times do you have to say that? This is something we heard right before the budget came into implementation, and we've heard it year after year. It's nice to see B.C. making movement on the grocery stores, because that was a big issue. I think we would have lost at WTO, so it needed to move forward on that.
What else do you think we need to do to get this government to understand? Maybe a new government will actually understand that better. What else can be done there? Is there compensation coming if you should lose that WTO case because it didn't react accordingly?
View Randy Hoback Profile
CPC (SK)
I have 20 seconds.
Roger, what did they offer you for compensation, in light of the fact that you are one of the losers in this deal? You are giving up market access that you normally have. What is there for the losers, the people who are not getting or maybe are more a victim of a deal like this?
View Randy Hoback Profile
CPC (SK)
There was nothing pre-negotiated, then.
Mr. Roger Pelissero: Not really, no.
Mr. Randy Hoback: It's election year. You should be good.
View Colin Carrie Profile
CPC (ON)
View Colin Carrie Profile
2019-06-18 9:36
Thank you very much, Mr. Chair, and I thank the witnesses for being here. I have so many questions that it's hard to know where to start.
Brian and Mathew, I've been doing a lot of round tables with manufacturers. I hear over and over again that some companies are right at the precipice of maybe closing up or moving their business. One guy put it to me this way. He said, “Look, Colin, I can handle good policy and I can handle bad policy, but I can't handle the uncertainty.”
Even though this is not a perfect deal and, as Randy was saying, there are still issues with fabricated steel, buy American provisions and softwood, what do you think the consequences would be if we weren't able to ratify this as far as that uncertainty question goes?
Brian, perhaps you could start.
View Colin Carrie Profile
CPC (ON)
View Colin Carrie Profile
2019-06-18 9:38
That's what I'm hearing over and over again, that we have to get some of that certainty back.
Can you comment on the relationship with the United States? Mathew, you said if we have a free trade agreement, we should have a free trade agreement. But I've heard some complaints that the U.S. is going towards managed trade. We've seen the use of tariffs, quotas and these types of things.
We didn't have that with the original NAFTA. In my community, of course, there's the auto sector, and the quota situation. There are questions about that and what it means.
Are you seeing a move towards this institutionalization of tariffs and quotas with the United States? What does that mean in our trading relationship?
View Colin Carrie Profile
CPC (ON)
View Colin Carrie Profile
2019-06-18 9:40
I agree. You mentioned this coordinated trading bloc. I think for decades we've been moving towards more integration, regulatory co-operation. There was a feeling for a while that Canada was on team North America, and with these section 232s and stuff, the feeling was that we weren't.
Getting on to that question about the section 232s, I believe there was $2 billion collected, tax dollars, with the tariffs, and it hasn't been disseminated. It was supposed to help out the companies that were really affected.
Can you comment on what should be done with that money and who it should be going to?
View Colin Carrie Profile
CPC (ON)
View Colin Carrie Profile
2019-06-18 10:20
Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.
I want to thank the witnesses for being here. I'm going to start right off with Mr. Adams and Mr. Volpe.
Everybody around the table is aware of the announcement of General Motors in Oshawa. We are going to be able to retain some parts and stamping manufacturing there, but the quote that I've heard more often than not with our manufacturers is that they can handle bad policy and they can handle good policy, but this uncertainty is a real problem. They're competing for international mandates and Mr. Trump wants to bring a lot of that investment to the United States, and if companies locate there, that's where they get the most certainty.
This deal—as Mr. Adams said, it's not a perfect deal—is really important for my community. So, thank you for your input.
Because we have such integrated trade and integrated supply chains and we build cars together in North America—that's the way it has been going—what would it do to our supply chains, our ability to win investment and certainty if this were not ratified, if we dithered in ratifying this agreement?
Maybe we could start with Mr. Adams and then go to Mr. Volpe.
View Colin Carrie Profile
CPC (ON)
View Colin Carrie Profile
2019-06-18 10:23
Yes, and I think these once-in-a-generation investments are so important that we're able to compete for that.
My next question, though, is about the complexity of the rules of origin.
I'm getting some feedback and concern because at the end of the day it's about jobs and keeping jobs in Canada, but if it gets so complicated, some auto manufacturers may just skip the whole thing, manufacture all of the product overseas, just ship it in and pay the 2.5%.
I was wondering if you could comment on the complexity for the rules of origin compared to the NAFTA. Is this a real concern that we need to be worried about? At the end of the day, it's about jobs and keeping jobs in Canada. If it gets far too complicated, are we at risk of losing that entire supply chain to countries that are offshore of North America or even towards the United States?
View Randy Hoback Profile
CPC (SK)
View Randy Hoback Profile
2019-06-18 10:47
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Thank you, witnesses, for being here and for attending by video conference.
Mr. Volpe, you talked about wanting to have this ratified right away. I just want some clarification. When you say “right away”, do you mean in sync with the U.S., or do you want us to go ahead of the U.S. in the ratification process?
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