That is correct. Out of
15,000,000 tons of bituminous coal imported into this country, something over 3,500,000 was slack coal. If we .get some of that slack coal into the province of Quebec and further west there will be a better market for it than there was last year. That is another reason why I support this change in the tariff. I support it also for the reason I intimated in an answer to the hon. minister the other day. I not only supported it, but I went to the government with two delegations from Nova Scotia in support of the proposition. If this thing works out as I think it will, we will have in Montreal a market for anywhere between 700,000 and 1,000,000 tons of slack coal .more than we had last year. I support it also because it will give more work to the miners of Nova Scotia, and furthermore it means that we will be living up to what this government proceeded to do when they came down with their first coal policy in 1903, because it is a broad Canadian coal and fuel policy.
I mlight go on and develop the situation with regard to the announicement made the other night by the Minister of Mines in connection with coke ovens, but I do not know that the time is opportune and I will leave that until the bill comes down. What will be the result? |Miay I read an article from the Ottawa Citizen? The gentleman who writes the editorials for this paper is a great admirer of mine. May I point out what the Premier of Nova Scotia Ithinks off this increased duty on slack coal? He has been for many yeans Minister of Mines of that province, and in a statement published in the Citizen of March 15, this appears:
Premier E. H. Armstrong, for many years minister of mines in the Nova Scotia government, in a statement issued this afternoon, interpreted the Change in the tariff to mean a direct saving to the Nova Scotia operator, competing in the St. Lawrence market cf thirty-six cents per ton in the selling price of his pioduct. It has been estimated that the ten per cent wage cut proposed by the British Empire Steel Corporation would effect a saving of twenty-two cents per ton in the selling price of coal. This is taken to mean, by close observers of the situation, that under the new tariff the British Empire Steel Corporation can afford to pay the 1924 wage scale, and at the same time enjoy a fourteen cents per ton advantage over the selling price they hoped to effect by reducing the wage scale by ten per cent.
Moreover Premier Armstrong estimated this afternoon that tariff change would enable the Nova Scotia operators to market an additional amount of coal approximating anywhere from three to four hundred thousand tons.
I make the quantity considerably more than that. In this connection the householders of this country iare not affected. As a matter of fact, itheir position is improved because no (householders will use slack coal unless it is a mixture that I have mentioned before. For stove or cooking purposes they must use run of mine icoal unless they are wealthy enough to buy anthracite. Therefore, this does not in any way affedt the householder or the price of bituminous coal. As a matter of fact, it improves that condition by reducing the rate from 53 cents to 50 cents a ton. I wish to read some opinions, and first of all I will read the opinion of the Ottawa Journal in regard to this change in the tariff:
The increase in the duty on slack coal, while expected to greatly increase the market for Maritime coal in eastern Canada as far west as Toronto, will not, it is believed, have any other effect on industrial centres west of Toronto than of greatly increasing the price of American coal it is necessary to import.
This slack coal will be used entirely iby the manufacturers of Ontario, and whereas we are given to-day by this change in the duty an ad valorem duty of 16 per cent, on this coal, we in Nova Scotia and those in the western provinces are paying for goods on which there is a protective tariff of from. 27 to 35 per cent ad valorem, so I think Ontario manufacturers can stand itheir share:
The imposition of the tax is felt to be largely the result of representations by the Canadian Manufacturers' Association and others, who are anxious that Canadian coal fields in the Maritime provinces be fully developed. Nine thousand million tons of bituminous coal lie in the coal fields of the Martimes, but in spite of this huge mass, it is not felt that production there can equal the demand for the coal that the new tax is bound to produce, as the question of supply is largely a matter of the number of mine openings which can be economically operated, and it is generally admitted by experts that the number of openings which can thus be made there is greatly limited.
Maritime coal in Ottawa was practically unknown a year or so ago, the total amount used in the industrial
The Budget-Mr. Carroll
plants of this district a year or so ago being around 14,000 tons
And I may say that this icame entirely from the province of New Brunswick, from the Minto mines:
At present however several of the large industrial plants, notably the E. B. Eddy Company, have been us'ng the Maritime slack coal.
And that became possible through the intervention of this government last year. Last year the Eddy company took from the province of Nova Scotia somie 40,000 tons of ooal. What do the coal dealers in the city of Ottawa say?
Several local merchants are pleased with the imposition of the new tax. Mr. J. G. Butterworth last night stated that the tax was undoubtedly a good thing, and would work advantageously to the Canadian mines in Nova Scotia. He thought it would go far to rectify the present unsatisfactory conditions existing there through the men in the mines being able to work only part time.
Mr. Napoleon Belanger, of the firm of O'Reilly & Belanger, wras also of the opinion that the tax was a good thing. It was impossible to state at this date just how the American dealers would meet the situation. They might reduce their prices so as to offset the tax. In any event, however, it would be good for the Canadian mines.
These people are dealers, I presume, entirely in fuel for domestic purposes, and slack coal is not such a fuel. I may be told that the Progressive party in the west and the low tariff men of the west will, of necessity, have to live up to their principles by opposing the imposition of this extra duty on slack coal. But I believe the western Progressives are just as broad in their Canadian point of view as are the Bluenoses of Nova Scotia or the corpulent men of Ontario and Quebec. I had serious doubt for some time as to how the operators and the people of western Canada would look on this subject of the putting up of the duty on slack coal to the same point as the duty on round coal. My fears in that respect have been dissipated, because long before the government brought down the budget, we had the views of western operators and the views of western politicians who, I presume, represent public opinion in western Canada. On the 11th February, 1925, the following appeared in the Edmonton Journal as being the policy of Mr. Greenfield and the Edmonton government, representing, I believe, public opinion in Alberta in regard to this subject:
The question of the dumping of coal at lake head, and the need for an adjustment of the duty as between slack coal and run of mine coal, is no new one to the government-
He was speaking for the government:
- taid Premier Greenfield to-day, referring to the memorandum of the Edmonton Board of Trade now
being drawn up by the coal section of that body. As a matter of fact, proceeded the premier, we have for the past eighteen months been taking up this subject with the Department of Customs at Ottawa,-
That is as long as I have been taking it up.
-and I have good reason to believe that ere long the duty on coal will be adjusted so that slack coal will pay the same duty as run of mine coal, thus preventing the separation of the two grades at Duluth,-
Tlieir troubles are at Duluth; ours are farther east.
-shipping in the slack separately under the low duty, then re-mixing at Winnipeg and selling the mixture once again as run of mine coal.
The very proposition we have had to contend with in the Maritime provinces. He goes on:
Referring to the Anti-Dumping Act, Premier Greenfield said that in his opinion this should be made the same as the United States act, with the valuation for duty purposes made at point of production, instead of at the point of direct export. The Alberta government, he added, would continue to press for this concession also until it was secured.
I have not looked into the details of the revision so far as the anti-dumping clause goes but I think the wishes of Premier Greenfield are being complied with in this respect.
' If we can succeed in these two things," concluded the premier, "we shall have greatly improved the position of Alberta coal in the competitive Winnipeg market. Nova Scotia is also pressing for the same thing as Alberta, and we have every hope of ultimate success."
The Edmonton Board of Trade passed a resolution along similar lines, as did the Board of Trade of Calgary, whose resolution I have not with me, and Premier Greenfield took the matter up. And a week or ten days ago a delegation from Nova Scotia appeared in Ottawa to impress upon the government the necessity of doing exactly what they had done in regard to coal. The government of Alberta has a trade commissioner who is well and favourably known to many of us and he was on his way east when the Nova Scotia delegation was on the way to Ottawa. They got in touch with him to ascertain his views and those of the government he represents as trade commissioner, and a telegram came from Premier Greenfield, as follows:
Edmonton, Alberta, March 18, 1925. Howard Stctchbury,
Replying your wire seventeenth please represent province with Nova Scotia delegation Thursday setting out our view in accordance with letters recently sent to Minister of Customs and Minister of Finance.
These are the very views which the Edmonton Board of Trade expressed in February or January of this year. It is the policy of the
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Alberta government, who I have no doubt represent public opinion in the
4 p.m. province of Alberta; they are with the people of Nova Scotia in the matter of this duty. Now what about the operators? I have heard it said both in this House and outside-
Subtopic: CONTINUATION OP DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE