February 28, 1950

SC

Victor Quelch

Social Credit

Mr. Vicior Guelch (Acadia):

Mr. Speaker, I was surprised that this question should have been brought up in this way, because after all there are before the house amendments to the address in reply to the speech from the throne which deal with this matter. In saying this I do not mean to indicate that the question is not of vital importance. The peculiar thing about the so-called dollar shortage and the loss of markets is that this is not something that just developed all of a sudden; it has been developing for many months, in fact for a number of years. The thing that people in this country are not able to understand is why we have allowed the situation to reach a climax before taking the necessary steps to stop it.

I was amused at an article which appeared in Toronto Saturday Night of February 7 under the heading, "In praise of fear," by P. M. Richards, and I should like to quote briefly from it as follows:

The silly feature of all this is that the inevitableness of the world dollar crisis should have been obvious from the start. Our politicians and economists and' bankers must surely have known it, yet they consented to follow the line of least immediate resistance.

I think we all feel that way. Then the writer indicated what he thought would be

a solution for the problem. Perhaps this article was written in a somewhat frivolous vein; nevertheless there is a germ of truth in it. Here is the way in which he says such a depression could be avoided:

I have a plan for the avoidance of economic depressions. It's simple, but, I think, should be effective. Each nation would appoint an economic czar, pay him handsomely and treat him with honour so long as he did well, but hang him-no excuses accepted-immediately the economy dipped below a certain level. He would get nice cash bonuses, and extras like beautiful Egyptian dancing girls, if results were extra good. If, unfortunately, they were extra bad, the economic czar's staff would be executed too.

I think men who accept positions of great responsibility for which they are well paid should have some obligation to produce results. What happens is that when they fail they are appointed to the Senate or made judges of the supreme court, or are paid higher salaries in order to encourage them to do better in the future. They suffer no penalty because of their inability to accomplish the task given to them.

I have been interested in recent months reading the speeches of the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Gardiner), and I want to congratulate him upon the way in which he places responsibility upon those whom he terms financial crackpots, the economists. I notice that the other day he said that some people are making it difficult to get our surpluses to the areas where they can be consumed. Who are those individuals? I think the Minister of Agriculture, having gone that far, should go a step farther and inform the house just who the people are who are making it impossible to distribute goods that are surplus so that they may be made available to people who need them.

We were told by the conference of the FAO that it would not be wise to adopt the ICCH proposal because it might delay convertibility. I do not believe the people in India, China or other parts of the world who are suffering from starvation consider it a good excuse when they are told that they must continue to suffer, in spite of the fact that there are large surpluses, just because it might delay convertibility of currency. I think they are far more interested in getting goods that might be made available to them than in seeing the convertibility of currency established.

As I say, the matter was crystal clear many months ago-in fact many years ago, back as far as 1944 and 1945. During those years this house debated at great length the question of the financing of international trade, and the matter was referred to the committee on reconstruction. We had Dr. Clark, the deputy

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minister of finance, before us, and the question was discussed at some length. I criticized the proposals that were placed before the committee, which were the forerunners of the Bretton Woods agreement, on the ground that they did not provide the means, in the first place, by which the devastated areas of Europe could be rehabilitated. It did not provide a method whereby these nations could get back rapidly into production. Furthermore, there was no provision under these financial arrangements whereby the creditor nations would be obliged to accept payment for their exports by taking imports from the areas that had rebuilt their industries.

The same argument was advanced on the discussion of the Bretton Woods agreement. I want to remind the Conservatives that at that time apparently they did not realize exactly what the Bretton Woods agreement stood for. Therefore we are suffering today from the consequences of that agreement because nobody in the house could possibly suggest that the funds provided under it could meet the great unbalance of trade today. Yet we were told then that that proposal would meet the financial needs of the world in the postwar transitional period and for a long time afterward.

The other day I put on the record a statement by Mr. Snyder to that effect. We have been told time and again that we do not want to have a recurrence of the kind of trade restrictions and controls that we had in the depression years. Indeed, anybody who studies that period will find that the reason these controls had to be put into operation was to bring about an adjustment in trade relations. The depression came first and then the controls were adopted to rectify the situation. I think that is made quite clear in a publication issued by the United States department of commerce entitled "The United States in the World Economy". At page 13, under the heading "Future Problems and Policies", I find the following:

Unless the supply of dollars is more adequate to meet the requirements of other countries, they assuredly will insist on their rights to exercise a close selective control over the use of the amounts available and to promote more intensive relations with third countries under preferential trading arrangements. And unless dollars are made available with greater regularity than in the past it would be both unjust and unwise to demand the removal of restraints and controls largely designed to protect the internal economies of other countries against external shock and pressure.

During the discussion of the Bretton Woods agreement we pointed out time and time again that it had a definite pro-creditor bias, that it placed absolutely no responsibility whatsoever upon creditor nations to accept payment from debtor nations in the only

Trade

way that the debtor nation could pay, by the exports of goods. At that time we were told it was a question of trade agreements, and that later on international trade agreements would be brought down which would place the responsibility where it should be. Later on we had the Geneva trade agreement. Did that take care of the situation? The Geneva trade agreement made the matter ten times worse. Not only did it leave on the debtor nation the obligation to balance trade, but it also placed upon the debtor nations restrictions that made it absolutely impossible for them to protect themselves against excess exports from creditor nations.

I am referring of course to the nondiscrimination clause. The pamphlet to which I have referred, "The United States in the World Economy", emphasizes the fact that debtor nations must be allowed to exercise controls and restraints on trade in order to protect their balance of payments. The Geneva trade agreement was referred to the standing committee on banking and commerce, but was not endorsed by it. It was returned to the house without being endorsed, and it has never been brought back to parliament. Why? It. is a very strange thing. This government is operating under the Geneva trade agreement. The government made agreements with other nations endorsing it. It was sent to the banking committee, failed to get endorsation, and has never been brought back before parliament. Nevertheless we are continuing either to operate under it or to pay lip service to it.

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SC

Solon Earl Low

Social Credit

Mr. Low:

Hear, hear. Where did they get their authority?

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SC

Victor Quelch

Social Credit

Mr. Quelch:

The vicious thing about the Geneva trade agreement is the so-called policy of non-discrimination. Surely it must be obvious that if a nation has an unbalance of trade with one nation and a favourable balance of trade with another it should be allowed to restrict its imports from the nation with which it has an unfavourable balance and increase its imports from the one with which it has a favourable balance. Yet, under the Geneva trade agreement, if a nation curtails its imports from one country it must curtail all similar imports from all other nations as well, even though it may have a favourable balance of trade with some of the other nations. The thing is absolutely unjustifiable. It cannot be defended on any score. I notice at the time we were discussing it no real defence was made for the so-called policy of non-discrimination. The Minister of Finance (Mr. Abbott) made some slight excuse in the house one day. He said that the United States was very keen on it and he thought we

should play along with them, or words to that effect. I am not quoting him exactly, but he certainly gave the impression that just because the United States was insistent upon this policy, and we were very much dependent upon the good will of that country-

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LIB

Douglas Charles Abbott (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. Abbott:

Not at all; the Minister of Finance believes in non-discrimination himself, and he said so.

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SC

Victor Quelch

Social Credit

Mr. Quelch:

Who said so?

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LIB

Douglas Charles Abbott (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. Abbott:

I did, and not because the United States believe in it but because we believe in it.

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SC

Victor Quelch

Social Credit

Mr. Quelch:

The Minister of Finance stated that the United States was making a fetish of it, and because they were so strongly in favour of it we were supporting it. Do not forget that under the Geneva trade agreement there were escape clauses which were put in there because it was recognized it would be impossible for certain nations to live up to these proposals. But the Minister of Finance said he was not prepared to use the escape clauses. He thought we should live up to the principle of the agreement. Why were the escape clauses put in there? They were put in because it was recognized apparently that they would be necessary in the transitional period, and it was evidently hoped that within a few years they would no longer be necessary. It is recognized that by 1952 we will not have established an equilibrium in world trade. That is frankly admitted by the interim report of ERP.

A lot of discussion has taken place as to what measures will be taken after Marshall aid ends. I think it is recognized by all people that some other kind of measure will have to be found. I am greatly disappointed that the government did not see fit to support the proposal put forward by the commodity experts of FAO. The Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Gardiner) stated he believed in the underlying principle, but on the other hand he was not going to support it because he apparently felt that we in Canada could do many of the things proposed thereunder. He believed we could store our surpluses and could finance directly with the nations concerned instead of financing through the international commodity clearing house. I am not criticizing the government on that score if that is their policy. If the policy of the government now is to take steps to store our surpluses until they are needed, if it is their policy to finance exports of goods to nations that have not the dollars to pay for them, if they will do that, then I will have no criticism of the government for failing to support the international commodity clearing

house. On the other hand, if they do not do so then I say they have definitely committed a breach of faith with the people of Canada and other peoples of the world. After all the lip service we have paid to such organizations as the United Nations and FAO, if we allow surpluses to accumulate and production to be reduced when there are starving people in need of them I say it shows a lack of sincerity on the part of the people who are dealing with these measures.

So far as the amendment is concerned it could mean a lot and it could mean nothing at all. If the proposal is that we convene a conference of the members of the commonwealth, if we are prepared to consider realistic proposals such as will recognize that the creditor nations have an equal responsibility with the debtor nations for balancing trade; if we will recognize that to the extent of being willing to accept imports in exchange for exports, investing surplus pounds in the underdeveloped countries, then perhaps we would have some chance of success. Furthermore, if we are prepared to recognize that the so-called policy of non-discrimination under the Geneva trade agreements is not a sound policy, then I think a conference of that kind might accomplish something. On the other hand, if the Conservatives are advocating a conference in order to bring in the kind of proposals they continue to support in this house, such as the proposal to make currencies convertible today, the thing would be doomed before it ever met. We have heard so many statements by members of the Conservative party criticizing the government for not having made currency convertible. To talk of the convertibility of currency in a world where there is an over-all disequilibrium of over $6,000 million is of course absolute and utter nonsense.

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LIB

Douglas Charles Abbott (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Hon. Douglas Abbott (Minister of Finance):

Mr. Speaker, I do not propose to take a great deal of time speaking to this amendment. I had not contemplated doing so, but in the course of the discussion two or three points have been raised on which I might say a word.

The amendment proposed by the hon. member for Lake Centre (Mr. Diefenbaker) asks that Canada take the initiative in calling another conference, as he puts it, of the nations of the British commonwealth and empire, to devise policies to restore our lost markets and thereby provide jobs for our Canadian people. As the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar (Mr. Coldwell) said, conferences of this kind are always helpful. I am not just sure what my hon. friend would suggest as the agenda for such a conference. I am not sure, as was indicated by the hon.

Trade

member for Rosetown-Biggar, whether this would be another conference such as was held in the early thirties, for raising tariffs and creating a special, preferred area. If it were to be that sort of conference I for one, as the hon. member said, would not want to take part in it.

It is true that there are many difficulties in connection with trading in the world today; but my experience has not been that those difficulties are due to a lack of conferences. I have attended some myself, including the Bretton Woods conference to which allusion was made a short time ago. On short notice I went to London last July to a meeting which was attended by the finance ministers of the nations of the commonwealth, at which inevitably trade matters were discussed. It was a very helpful conference, and led to the further meeting in Washington in September, at which trade and financial matters were again discussed, and at which I think certain desirable long-term objectives were laid down and certain short-term policies were agreed upon which have proved helpful. Frankly, however, I do not think the trading problems of the world are going to be solved by simply calling another conference. I for one do not like to either initiate or attend a conference unless I know exactly what we are going to talk about. While I have no doubt it will be found desirable to hold further conferences to discuss trade matters, I do not know that the holding of a full-fledged commonwealth or empire conference at this time would add very much to the knowledge of this or any other member of the commonwealth in reference to specific solutions which can be found for these trade difficulties.

Now I want to say just a word about the references that have been made to the Geneva trade agreements. As the house knows, those agreements have been given only provisional application as far as Canada is concerned. They are in effect, and have been in effect for some eighteen months, I think. They have proved of the greatest benefit to this country; and in my opinion the substantial increase in our exports to the United States last year was in large part a result of the very definite tariff concessions we obtained under those Geneva agreements. They are subject to ratification by the congress of the United States, as they are subject to ratification by this parliament; and it is perhaps just as well that we should not try to rush them through our parliament before they have been brought up for consideration in congress.

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CCF

Major James William Coldwell

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Coldwell:

Were they not on the order paper for a long time?

Trade

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LIB

Douglas Charles Abbott (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. Abbott:

That is quite true; they were on the order paper but were not reached before parliament dissolved.

So much for the Geneva agreements themselves. I want to say just a word about the policy of non-discrimination to which such exception has been taken by the hon. member for Acadia (Mr. Quelch). If any country in the world had an interest in establishing as a trading policy that one country should not discriminate against another by putting on arbitrary embargoes, prohibitions and' the like, that country is Canada. My hon. friend comes from' a part of the country which, I understand, is very interested in exporting beef cattle to the United States, as well as other agricultural products. If we got into this ring-around-a-rosy of discrimination nothing would be easier than for the United States to say, "We will just put an embargo against Canadian cattle coming into the United1 States," and I do not think that would be in the interests of Canada. The same thing goes for a great many other things; and that applies not only to the United States but to many other countries as well. So, as far as I am concerned, and I believe I am expressing the views of the government in this respect, we stand four-square for a principle of nondiscrimination. As far as this country is concerned a reasonable tariff is the only form of barrier we want to place against importations; and we are constantly striving to reduce tariffs by reciprocal agreements with other countries.

If hon. members will recall for a moment the history of this country since 1935 they will remember that as soon as this government got back into power it negotiated the first reciprocal trade agreement with the United States. That was followed by two later treaties, one of which was really a three-way treaty with the United Kingdom; and it was then that our trading position with the United States began to improve. Now we sell to that country, speaking from memory, something of the order of a billion and1 a half dollars' worth of goods and1 services each year. That is an absolutely vital factor in our trade; and any policy we adopted which might be considered by our southern neighbour as unfriendly would, I think, be an extremely undesirable policy for Canada.

There was only one other point raised to which I want to make brief reference; that is the suggestion by the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar that we should accept sterling for some of the surplus products we have available for sale but which some of our customers in the soft currency areas say they have not the money to buy. The hon. member qualified his suggestion by saying we

should not accept blocked sterling, but should take sterling we could use a little later to do something or other with, or to invest in some other part of the world. I would point out that, nevertheless, in effect we would be taking blocked sterling, because today sterling is not a convertible currency. Our producers and our workers cannot take sterling and use it to pay their bills. So for the exports we sold in exchange for sterling we would have to provide Canadian dollars to our own citizens; in other words we would be extending additional credit to those purchasers. That may or may not be desirable; but I think the house and the country should realize that in taking sterling in payment for our goods we are extending credit; and in addition, for what it may be worth, we are assuming an exchange risk as well.

My view, which I have voiced here previously, is that if we are able and willing to extend additional credits to other countries, we should do so in terms of our own currency. At the present time, as the house knows, we are continuing to extend credit to the United Kingdom at the rate of $10 million a month on the very substantial credit originally arranged. In my opinion that is all we can afford to extend at the present time, because it must be remembered that one country cannot extend credit to another except in one of three ways. It must consume less than it is producing, and in Canada today we are consuming very close to what we are producing. There is little surplus for extending credit abroad. Second, we can borrow money somewhere else, in order to lend it to a third party. In other words, it would be quite possible for us to borrow money in the United States, in order to extend credit to the United Kingdom or western Europe. But I have never heard it seriously suggested we should follow that course. Third, we could extend that credit out of our accumulated reserves of gold and United States dollars. I do not think I need to tell the house that those reserves today, while they are improving, are certainly no more than adequate for the requirements of a trading nation such as Canada.

By imposing still more rigid import restrictions, embargoes and one thing and another, which would prevent people importing from the United States such essential things as steel and coal, we could reduce our consumption, and so have more available for lending abroad. Perhaps I need hardly point out to the house that Canada today is a country which requires substantial capital investments. The oil fields in western Canada, which are in the process of development, require a substantial capital investment.

I must say, therefore, that I feel it is unrealistic to expect that we in Canada can produce any substantial over-all surplus which would be available for foreign lending. We will do what we can in the future, as we have in the past. I do not think anyone should be under the illusion that we can extend additional credit, whether by accumulating sterling for investment in Burma, India or anywhere else, or any other form of credit, unless we are prepared to restrict our own consumption in this country.

I do not know that there is anything more I have to add. The motion which has been proposed by the hon. member for Lake Centre (Mr. Diefenbaker), on a motion to go into supply, amounts to a motion of want of confidence. I repeat what I said at the beginning, that I do not think anything is to be gained by a further conference of the kind suggested. Whatever our difficulties may be, they are not due to a lack of conferences. Such conferences, however, are always helpful. We have never refused an invitation to attend a conference of this kind. May I close by saying that I do not think any steps need be taken by Canada to initiate such a conference.

Hon, W. Earl Rowe (Dufferin-Simcoe): Mr. Speaker, I am happy to second the motion moved by the hon. member for Lake Centre (Mr. Diefenbaker). I believe it is of vital importance to this country. I am not at all disturbed, and I trust other hon. members will not be disturbed, by the suggestion of the Minister of Finance (Mr. Abbott) that this is some devious means by which v/e are going to raise tariffs in some imperial trading club, and thus interfere with the trade we have with the United States of America. Let me assure you, sir, and assure this house that that is not the sort of motion that has been moved. I feel that no one should know that better than the Minister of Finance, or his colleague the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Gardiner).

I recall the same bogey being raised in this house long ago. I was here at the time the famous statement was made by Mr. Mackenzie King, who on a similar occasion, about 1930, told us v/e must not provoke the United States of America. We have grown up, Mr. Speaker, and the United States is prouder of us because we have. A few years after that the countervailing duties were proposed by the same party. Only five years before, they had ridiculed the brick for brick policy of the Right Hon. Arthur Meighen when he led this party. We are not talking about tariffs. Whenever there was any mention of tariffs, there was an immediate cry, "Hush, hush; we must not provoke the United States."

Trade

The United States of America, Mr. Speaker, does not look on this.great independent country of Canada as a child in swaddling clothes. They realize we are one of the greatest trading nations in the world. I agree with the Minister of Finance when he says that Canada will develop into a great trading nation. As our country grows and develops year by year, whether the Liberals, Conservatives or any other party is in power, the natural evolution of Canada will be to trade more and more with the United States of America. Since we live beside the United States, that is the natural thing. I agree with the Minister of Finance when he says we need that country. I understand that at the moment $100 million is needed to develop the great oil fields of western Canada in that rich province of Alberta. Some day it will be, if it is not now, the richest province in the dominion.

As one who has watched the growth of this country, Mr. Speaker, I can visualize pipe lines carrying oil out of Canada, instead of dusty railway cars bringing coal into Canada. I know that one plant has already spent a million dollars in converting the boilers to burn Alberta oil instead of Pennsylvania coal. No one can think of the future of this country without realizing that we are bound to have increased trade with the United States of America. As a farmer, I can even visualize the possibility of the United States increasing its population to such an extent that it will buy more of our agricultural products. There are now 150 million people in that country, while we, with all these natural resources, have such a small population. During election campaigns, we talk about our great hinterland, the oil of western Canada, our coal and such natural resources-[DOT]

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LIB

Douglas Charles Abbott (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. Abbott:

And our great paper mills.

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PC

William Earl Rowe

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Rowe:

Yes, we have some great paper mills. They are run just as well as this government is running the country, too, but I do not think that is much of a compliment. I do not mean to say that the Minister of Finance could not run a paper mill quite well, either. X am not going to discuss that, however, or be sidetracked. In all seriousness, I do want to say that this motion does not involve any particular commodity, or any particular group of manufacturers. It involves the general economy of this country. In the utmost sincerity, I say that I am appalled and amazed at the attitude of this government.

Last year I read an article in _Montreal

Gazette to the effect that the Minister of Finance inferred there was a great possibility of developing trade with the United States. He seemed to emphasize it. I read another article which stated that the Minister of

Trade

Trade and Commerce had made the same type of speech. There is not an hon. member in this house, from any part of the dominion, who has not a friendly feeling towards the United States, or a most optimistic outlook concerning trade with that country. It is natural. But, Mr. Speaker, surely we can arouse this government from their lethargy. Surely we can impress upon them that we are trying to find a market for products that the United States now has a surplus of, and which they are trying to sell as well. I cannot understand the government's attitude. For instance, the United States is a country that has 230 million pounds of dried milk, 95 million pounds of butter, 22 million pounds of cheese, 64 million pounds of dried eggs or the equivalent of 192 million dozen, 172 million bushels of wheat, 83 million bushels of corn and almost 4 billion bales of cotton now owned by the government

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?

An hon. Member:

Potatoes.

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PC

William Earl Rowe

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Rowe:

And somebody says potatoes. There are millions of hundredweight of potatoes going at one cent a hundredweight. How can any sane businessman, let alone a member of parliament, think for a moment-

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?

Some hon. Members:

Oh, oh.

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PC

William Earl Rowe

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Rowe:

Yes; probably I might have put it the other way round. How can they judge for a moment that we are going to open up trade avenues for the surplus agricultural products of the mixed farmers of Canada? Stop and think about it. What we are doing today, Mr. Speaker, is pleading with all the sincerity that we possess that this government will continue our friendly trade relations with that greatest country in the world, the United States of America. But we ask them to sit down around a table with the prime ministers of the other British dominions and representatives of the other empire countries. It is true that plenty of excuses can be put up, as has been done by the Minister of Finance (Mr. Abbott) today, in order to show what cannot be done. But whether it is in business or private affairs, I find that you never get anywhere by sitting down and trying to find a reason why you cannot do something. We want to show the reasons that it can be done. It has been done before, Mr. Speaker.

What alarms me even more is this. We know that today, even outside our economy, probably the most vital concern of every one of us is security. Those of us who have children and children's children coming on are concerned, as is every hon. member of this house, with the safety and security of our people. The government has the Atlantic

pact for the defence of our security in that respect. We are spending, I believe, $400 million this year and I understand that perhaps next year we may spend even $800 million. I am not criticizing that expenditure. Perhaps it will be necessary to spend a billion. God only knows. We all pray to God that it will not be necessary to go on and on spending in preparation for war. We can talk all we wish, but it is in the power and control of others whether we are going to safeguard our peace or not.

We have learned through history, in the first great war as well as in the second, that armies march on their stomachs, and that the agricultural production of nations is of vital concern. We know how difficult it was in the first war to feed the troops overseas. We know how, in the second war, the poor children of Europe almost starved to death. We know how the British housewife got along-without going into what has been presented in the magazines-living on three or four ounces of butter per week, and with the shortage of other foods. I should like to urge upon the government the vital importance of our production of food and the maintenance of markets to encourage that production, as it is linked, dovetailed and interwoven with our whole defence policy itself. There is no question about that, Mr. Speaker. What are we going to do?

Not so long ago I heard the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Gardiner), as did every other hon. member who is here now, telling what might have to happen if the war continued. I remember that one evening he gave an interesting speech in which he told us that the people might have to eat more cereals and less other foodstuffs, and that it might come to the stage where we might have to handle our foodstuffs and our cereals production so that the people could even exist if the war lasted long enough. That is of vital importance. In this cold country, where you have costly machinery and high-priced buildings, you cannot maintain that production unless you have some place in which to market the products at a reasonable rate, even though it is not as high a rate as we have been receiving. I know that some will say, "You are getting better prices today." That is irrelevant. We are not talking about the high prices we have had during the war. There were high prices in 1919, and following the first great war. Wheat went to enormous prices. Hogs went to $26 a hundredweight. I can remember, as can many others in this house, the period back between 1925 and 1930 when even the farmers said, "Oh, this will never end", and so on and so forth. We had enormous markets at that time in Britain.

After 1914 and 1917, when we developed our ability to supply the old land, in normal times when she did not have her food rationed she took enormous quantities from us. In 1921 we sold Britain $77 million worth of meats alone. We sold her 250 million pounds of bacon in 1920. In 1900 we sold her more cheese than we are going to sell her in 1950.

What is wrong? It is all very well to talk about the dollar; but I leave it to you, Mr. Speaker, and to this house to answer that question. Again I say: Would any sane businessman, who had had a customer for fifty years, change customers or forsake him because that customer got a little hard up for a year or two? It is not going to deprive us of the United States markets. The Minister of Finance is only repeating verbatim speeches that were made here when Mr. Robb was minister of finance. I remember an occasion, because I was here in the house at the time-I think it was in 1926-when the same speeches were made. It will be recalled that in our election campaign we used Mr. King's statement: "You must not provoke the

United States of America." It was used in one of the monthly books we put out as campaign literature.

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LIB

James Garfield Gardiner (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. Gardiner:

It is a nice thing to belong

to a party that can keep its leaders and its policies.

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PC

William Earl Rowe

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Rowe:

Yes, it is; but, Mr. Speaker, a former leader of the minister's party, Sir Wilfrid Laurier, said that it was better to break a bad policy than to keep it. I think the minister might look over some of that former leader's words; because if you have failed two or three times, you should at least take the hint and start to learn.

In 1922 the Fordney-McCumber tariff cut our markets off overnight for beef cattle in the United States. Then after we tried not to provoke the United States of America, in 1930 the Hawley-Smoot tariff cut us off overnight. There was nothing wrong about their doing that in the United States. Probably the odd cattle man was a little bit sore for a while, but no hon. member in this house thought any the less of the United States of America for handling their own business. We were selling cattle here in Ontario just a while before that time for about twenty cents a pound. I can well recall selling them, after the Hawley-Smoot tariff-and they were just as good cattle-for a nickel a pound. I remember selling hogs for less. That is all very fine, but we had lost that market.

Topic:   TRADE CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   PROPOSED COMMONWEALTH
Sub-subtopic:   CONFERENCE
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LIB

Douglas Charles Abbott (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. Abboil:

We are getting a lot of them back now.

Topic:   TRADE CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   PROPOSED COMMONWEALTH
Sub-subtopic:   CONFERENCE
Permalink
PC

William Earl Rowe

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Rowe:

Will the minister tell me any of those articles that I have mentioned for

Trade

which there is a permanent market in the United States, when their milk is going rancid?

Topic:   TRADE CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   PROPOSED COMMONWEALTH
Sub-subtopic:   CONFERENCE
Permalink

February 28, 1950