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S'enregistrer au Flux RSS Le Sénat du Canada

Post under ‘Saskatchewan’ tag

Question on the Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan

27 October 2021 at 14h19

Hon. Céline Hervieux-Payette: Honourable senators, my question is for the Leader of the Government in the Senate. As you know, Canada is the world leader in potash production. The Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan is primarily Canadian-owned, generates revenue of more than $9 million, and employs almost 5,000 people.

Canada can be proud of this company, which helps farmers in Canada and throughout the world continue to produce food for a growing population. The Investment Canada Act clearly states that the government can block the sale of a Canadian corporation for reasons of national security.

I will read the first paragraph of section 25.2:

If the Minister has reasonable grounds to believe that an investment by a non-Canadian could be injurious to national security, the Minister may, within the prescribed period, send to the non-Canadian a notice that an order for the review of the investment may be made under subsection 25.3(1).

I remind you that it is a review and that we are not talking at this point about blocking the sale. I do not have to tell you that Potash Corporation is of strategic importance to Canada and its farmers. Through this corporation, we are well positioned internationally in terms of agricultural products and food security.

Nevertheless, Prime Minister Stephen Harper recently indicated that he would not oppose the sale of Potash Corporation to BHP Billiton, an Australian corporation, even though it is strongly opposed by Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall.

Will the Canadian government block this sale, or review it in the interests of Canadians, and protect an industry of strategic importance to the future of Canada?

[English]

Hon. Marjory LeBreton (Leader of the Government): I thank the honourable senator for her question. I will repeat what I stated last week in answer to the same question. The minister and the government will only approve applications for review where an investment demonstrates that it is likely to be of net benefit to Canada. The review process is rigorous. Under the Investment Canada Act, we are the only government to reject a deal — MDA, in 2008 — and to take a company to court, U.S. Steel, in 2009. In the 13 years previous, the Liberal government did neither.

I repeat that we will only approve applications for review where an investment demonstrates that it is likely to be of net benefit for Canada.

Senator Hervieux-Payette: The situation that Potash Corporation is facing is familiar: a large multinational corporation that is an industrial gem, creates thousands of jobs, invests in research and development and invests in its communities. This situation sounds exactly the same as other situations with corporations that the federal government allowed to be taken over, and all those corporations failed to ensure that the new foreign owners would respect their promises to protect Canadian jobs.

Furthermore, the federal government failed to appropriately examine those transactions, to the detriment of Canadians. I think of the employees of Inco, Alcan, Noranda, and Stelco, all of whom were told that their jobs would be safe under these new foreign owners but rapidly realized that their interests would not be respected, that only the interests of the foreign investors would be taken into account.

I would like to correct the honourable senator with respect to foreign investment and takeovers in Canada and tell her that there has been more such activity in the past three years than in the previous 15 years under both Conservative and Liberal governments.

Will the government commit to protecting the jobs and livelihoods of workers of Potash Corporation by blocking this sale, or will it let 5,000 workers see their benefits reduced, their livelihoods destroyed and Canada lose its competitive advantage?

Senator LeBreton: First, with regard to the steel industry, the honourable senator missed the point I made in answer to the first question. We took U.S. Steel to court over their inaction in living up to their agreements.

Honourable senators, I repeat that the government will not enter approve review of any investment that is not of direct benefit to Canada. The honourable senator cites statistics. We are now in a global economy. We are embarking on many free trade agreements with many countries around the world. We had gone over a decade without signing even a small free trade agreement. The honourable senator failed to mention the number of Canadian companies that have moved into the global market and taken over companies around the world. We are, in fact, in a global economy, as honourable senators well know.

Senator Tkachuk: We are a global player.

Senator Hervieux-Payette: It does not create jobs here.

Child education: a conservative MP “seems to be advocating the use of force”

9 October 2021 at 17h46

leader-post logo

 

 

 

 

[...] to seem clearly to be advocating the use of force without defining its limits, such as Ms. Block’s mail-out does, is particularly disturbing.

Without some clarification on her part, it could be seen as advocating a form of discipline for which there is not one iota of scientific data to indicate it is anything but destructive.

That this stance should come from an erstwhile member of the Saskatoon Health Region, which should be playing a front-line role in identifying potentially dangerous behaviour, makes her parliamentary missive even more disturbing.

Read the article of the Leader Post

 

 

 

 

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